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Friday, September 25, 2009

Ad Surf Daily President Breaks Silence: I'm going to trial

Ad Surf Daily (ASD) president Andy Bowdoin finally broke his silence Monday announcing he's going to fight the federal charges against him and go to trial. Bowdoin made his public address by recording a phone message which served as an update to all ASD members.
The embattled internet marketing company is said to have 125,000 members nationwide. After federal agents accused the company of being a ponzi scheme and seized assets totalling $53 million dollars, members have been left in the dark. Bowdoin recorded a message but did not hold a 'live' conference call in which members could ask questions.

The call began with an automated voice, "Welcome to Ad Surf Daily update call on September 21, 2009, now here’s Andy Bowdoin":

I transcribed Bowdoin's address which follows:

"I have decided to stop talking with the government and get before a jury to plead our case. I believe that with our present attorneys that we can build a winning case. We have three expert witnesses that are willing to testify that our program was not a ‘ponzi’. The government doesn’t have any right to keep your money. We want to get your money back, we’d like to restart ASD. Now I’d be willing to tweak the program if the government desires. To those of you that would like to restart with ASD when you get your money back you’d have the right to do so. Now I haven’t hurt anyone, we’ve only made money for our members, ASD did not have a victim until the government stepped in and crushed our company. I’ve spent over a million dollars on legal fees to get your money back and to stay out of prison and it reminds me of this person back in Mississippi, Cheryl Blackwood. She was Miss America in 1980. When she was 5 years old a milkman told her that some day she was going to be Miss America. She said that planted a seed in her mind. She entered her first pageant when she was 18, it was a Miss America preliminary; Miss Choctaw County in Mississippi. She lost. The next year she entered the Mississippi State pageant and lost again. The following year she entered the Mississippi State again and lost again. The third year at Mississippi State, which was her fourth year in the pageant, she won the University title and she thought that she was finally on her way but she lost at the state level. The fifth spring she entered another local pageant and won, she won Miss Mississippi and went on to Atlantic City and won the Miss America pageant. It took her five years but she made it.

Now we suffered a great loss on August the first 2008 when the government came in and shut us down and we’ve continued to suffer for the past year. But folks, I firmly believe that beyond a shadow of a doubt that we will win before a jury. I don’t know exactly when that will take place but we will be ready. As I said, that I am restricted on this call tonight as to the things I can say because of the upcoming trial but we will be able to have conference calls and be able to present things to you as they happen."

Bowdoin then concludes his address and introduces a woman who he says he appointed to be ASD's new spokesperson.

ASD's problems began last fall when Federal prosecutors filed charges against Bowdoin after determining he was operating an elaborate ponzi scheme. Officials contend the company’s model required its ‘members’ to purchase what are termed as ’ad packs’ in order to participate in the program. Members then received a profit each time they clicked on websites of cooperating members who paid a nominal fee to advertise their businesses with ASD. The US Attorney General’s Office contends the company was a ‘ponzi’ because many members did not have legitimate businesses and ASD was only able to generate revenue by having new members pay to participate in the program.

Bowdoin's decision to fight the charges against him has sparked mixed reactions from ASD members. Many have expressed their opinions on various online forums dedicated to discussing problems surrounding the company. Bowdoin admits to having already spent more than a million dollars in legal fees and those costs could skyrocket if the case goes to trial. Many members support Bowdoin and his fight against the federal government while others feel he should be imprisoned for the questionable methods he used to operate the company. Still others remain hopeful they will retrieve money they've invested in ASD but now fear Bowdoin will use much of it to fight the federal charges against him.

Several months ago Bowdoin agreed to release his claim on ASD's assets and allow the government to assume ownership of the funds. Officials with the United States Department of Justice promised to distribute the money to ASD members using carefully controlled methods.

Bowdoin later changed his mind and decided to reverse his decision to release the funds to federal officials.

Numerous attempts to personally interview Bowdoin have been declined by his attorney, Charles A. Murray. Murray has also been unresponsive in providing additional details surrounding this case.

Mike Mason
305-527-3088
Mike@MikeMason.Biz
Investigative Reporting Video Resume: http://bit.ly/Z512e
Blog: http://investigativereportermikemason.blogspot.com/

7 comments:

  1. Like I told you before and I will tell you again. Andy and his band of merry men is going to jail. ASD was and still is a PONZI.

    The only thing that Andy is trying to do is keep his butt out of jail. He could care less as to all those people who lost money thru his scheme.

    You can paint a white horse black but it is still a white horse. Just like you continue to make Andy out to be some type of great visionary and an innocent man who the Government is going after...but, the fact remains he is a convicted con artist who did not care that he was taking money from hard working people to support his lavish life style.

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  2. It is a little misleading, to say the least, for Bowdoin to suggest he is choosing to go to trial. The only available decision we are awaiting at present is whether or not the Federal Judge will allow him to "change his mand" and withdraw his acceptance of the civil forfeiture that he made WITH PREJUDICE. There has still not been a convincing legal argument put forward which would give the Judge any reason to reverse her agreement to his earlier acceptance. "It's not fair" and ")I) dont want to go to prison" are not sustainable legal arguments! She has already pointed out in her denial of the first lot of pro se motions that it is not customary to reverse her own precedents.

    More smoke and mirrors, to put off the "evil day" when the Government finally gets title to the remains of the ASD funds and is able to start the forensic accounting necessary to be able to implement restitition to the victims.

    All the talk about the "evil government" is getting a bit "old".

    As this is not his first brush with the civil or the criminal courts on issues of financial fraud, his seeming ignorance of the law is less than convincing.

    There is no deal or contract available to anyone in his situation which will let him off with a probabation if he is convicted at a criminal trial and the recommendation by the prosecution for a reduced sentence was generous. It is noted that no point does he protest his innocence of criminal charges, only the amount of jail time he will receive.

    His comparison of his struggle to run a successful financial fraud with the struggle of a severely injured child who went on to becond Miss America is in very bad taste. However, his comparison of the ASD raid with 9/11 showed equally bad taste and the same lack of moral value, so it comes as no surprise.

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  3. This whole case is in chaos! Does the judge have any decision to make??? Why haven't we heard a word from her? We are now 2 weeks past deadline on her honor's decision. What the heck? What's the purpose of a deadline if you can't meet it!! And, of course, not a word from the govt.! This is not what I call "doing your job!" Just make a decision and quit the delays!! ASD members deserve some justice!

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  4. This seems like a great case for Glen Beck or Bill O'Reilly to investigate at Fox News. Maybe they could get some justice for ASD victims with their media coverage. At this point, it seems like the only way to get any answers from the govt.

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  5. I wonder how many checks that were sent to ASD were actually cashed by the feds after they raided the company? I have heard many members say that instead of having their checks returned or cancelled they were cashed and deposited into a government account. If this is true, I wonder if that account pays interest. I have not yet confirmed this though.

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  6. Mike,

    The answer to your questions can be found in the relevant Federal seizure statutes. Of course it does not really matter if the seizure account pays interest or not. A quick look at the relevant federal statutes will show that the second that a member placed their check into the mail, or into the hands of an ASD representative at a rally, at that instant the check became the property of Andy Bowdoin. When Andy Bowdoin's assets were seized, they purportedly included those uncashed checks, but the checks did belong to Andy. Further, it would be ILLEGAL for the government to send the uncashed checks back to the people who sent them in. One of the principles of the restitution process is that all victims must share more or less equally in the pain. Sending back the uncashed checks to the people who sent them in would create an inherent unfairness to, say, the group of people who sent in checks just days earlier and had their checks deposited by ASD. That is not legal.

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  7. This is the link for the latest information about this case:
    http://www.justice.gov/usao/dc/Victim_Witness_Assistance/files/January%204%202010%20Update.pdf
    I hope that the goverment now in possesion of our money will return it to the legal owners: WE THE PEOPLE WHO SENT OUR HARD EARN MONEY.

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