ASD Members International Dissolved

It came online a few months ago with the strange promise it would litigate against government entities involved in the AdSurfDaily case — even if they were behaving legally. If lawsuits didn’t work, then perhaps it would see about having prosecutors charged with crimes.

But ASD Members International (ASDMI), a nonprofit registered in Missouri, is no more. The corporation has been formally dissolved. It existed for less than 90 days — Oct. 30, 2008 through Jan. 26, 2009. The process of dissolving the entity actually began on Dec. 10. Formal papers were signed Jan. 21, and the dissolution was recorded Jan. 26.

ASDMI’s website now redirects to tripod.com.

“As most of you know by now, Andy Bowdoin has withdrawn as a claimant in the Forfeiture of Assets against ASD,” ASDMI said on the tripod site.  “ASDMI (ASD Members International) had retained an attorney to try and overturn the forfeiture. It was determined that it would be too difficult and costly to work on a contingency basis for a class action suit. ASDMI was attempting to obtain legal standing in case 1:08-cv-01345. We also found that to obtain standing would be extremely difficult if not impossible.

“Mr. Bowdoin’s recent actions were a surprise to us and our negotiations have ended abruptly,” ASDMI continued. “The moneys we have spent on this negotiation have been wasted to say the least.”

ASDMI had crowed on its website as late as last week that it had persuaded 167 people to part with their money and join in the important work of jailing prosecutors and suing the government back to the Stone Age, if necessary, to recover money paid to AdSurfDaily.

Prosecutors seized at least $93.5 million amid allegations that ASD President Andy Bowdoin was running a Ponzi scheme and engaging in wire fraud and money-laundering.

Image problems for ASDMI began out of the gate. A PR flap ensued when two board members of the group were linked to Curtis Richmond, a man associated with a Utah “Indian” tribe a federal judge ruled a sham. The tribe, purportedly formed in an Arby’s restaurant, is well-known in local, state and federal government circles for employing a strategy called “mailbox arbitration” and threatening prosecutors, judges and police officers.

ASDMI denied any links to Richmond, who was convicted of felony contempt of court in 2007 for threatening or trying to intimidate federal judges, but the links were obvious. In November, Richmond attempted to file a motion to dismiss the ASD case. Judge Rosemary Collyer denied him leave to file.

At the same time, at least one ASDMI board member — through a separate website — was organizing a campaign to send certified letters to prosecutors.

Mailbox arbitration works on the theory you can mail certified demand letters to litigation opponents. If they don’t sign for the letters or choose to ignore the demands, you declare they’ve defaulted on a contract and file a judgment for an enormous amount of money.

It didn’t help that Dale Stevens, “chief” of the sham tribe — the Wampanoag Nation, Tribe of Grayhead, Wolf Band — was arrested for child pornography and anounced his intention to marry two underage girls.

One of the girls was 12. Stevens, 69, said he’d hoped to enter into marital bliss with her in exchange for half a cooler of “energy bars.”

And it didn’t help when Judge Rosemary Collyer issued a ruling in November that ASD had not demonstrated that it was a legal business and not a Ponzi scheme at a Sept. 30-Oct. 1 evidentiary hearing.

In the end, ASDMI lasted about as long as a typical autosurf Ponzi scheme. Many surf sites begin to fail within two to three months of launch (if not sooner) — sometimes because the operator is impossibly upside down, and sometimes because he or she simply decides to run with the money.

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7 Responses to “ASD Members International Dissolved”

  1. Not only have the ASD faithful been taken in by ASDMI, they also have been taken for a ride by ASDMBA too. What truly is amazing is that anyone would think they could get legal standing when all the money was in Andy’s name.

    What really would have done ASDMI in was when they had to file their tax returns. While they got approved by the Missouri Secretary of State, they never did file the appropriate documents to be legal by the IRS and the state of Missouri’s tax requirements. All they got approved was their Articles of Incorporation, which is the easy part of the filing. But it means absolutely nothing unless you get the IRS and state seal of approval tax-wise. Without them, you are not an approved nonprofit public benefit corporation, and your donations tax deductible. I think the members could get them in deep doo-doo if they wanted. This could get ugly.

    At some point you hope that people would finally wise-up and not get taken again; but alas with the people in ASD that does not seem to be the case.

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  2. Hi Lynn,

    It’s getting harder and harder to catalog the sideshows associated with ASD. Some ASD members — perhaps many ASD members — were/are legitimately hurting.

    Not to worry! ASDMI rushes in to fill the void and save the day, sucking away even more money from the disaffected. It was just disgraceful, and every bit as cynical as Andy Bowdoin’s behavior.

    Consider Bowdoin asking the members for testimonials BEFORE he’d disclosed some embarrassing truths about ASD, including the fact ASD money was used to retire his step-son-in-law and daughter-in-law’s $157,000 mortgage.

    Bowdoin told the faithful he’d taken only about $50,000 out of ASD — but not until prosecutors disclosed he was advertising a failed, dissolved business in his own rotator. Bowdoin didn’t tell members that his family was using ASD like a cash machine to retire mortgage debt, buy cars, a boat, jet skis, etc. — hundreds of thousands on dollars in June alone.

    Imagine how many people who provided testimonials are embarrassed or furious now. Russian hacker’s stole $1 million? How many people at the rallies knew about that?

    Now, consider that a stated purpose of ASDMI was to litigate AGAINST the prosecutors — the people who stepped in to put an end to the ASD madness before it mushroomed.

    Consider that two ASDMI board members were trumpeting Curtis Richmond, but didn’t bother to disclose the tie to the sham “Indian” tribe, Richmond’s conviction for messing with federal judges and his declaration that he was a “Sovereign” who enjoyed diplomatic immunity from prosecution.

    ASDMI still has a donation button. In its dissolution announcement, it did not name the attorney it had hired, did not say how much it had paid the attorney, did not provide any accounting at all.

    The group is transferring blame to Andy Bowdoin now, but ASDMI was out of touch from the beginning.

    Litigating against the prosecutors was just magical thinking — or, less politely, a crackpot fantasy that easily could have led to criminal charges against the magical thinkers.

    Along those lines, gaining standing in the case was a virtual impossibility. Judge Collyer made it perfectly clear in her ruling and in her docket entries that she wasn’t going to permit any nonparty to pollute the record of the case.

    One of ASDMI’s board members excitedly announced that Richmond’s failed motion with the court was going to lead to “major” criminal charges.

    Good grief. So much of this is sad.

    The date Dec. 10 appears on the papers as the date ASDMI first acted to dissolve, meaning it was in the process of dissolving only about 41 days after organizing.

    But it didn’t make an announcement on its site that it intended to dissolve and still was trolling for money with a donation button. On Dec. 26, it reported it was up to 167 members. This was 16 days after it made the decision to dissolve, according to its own filings.

    See this document:

    http://patrickpretty.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/asdmi.pdf

    Patrick

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  3. Lynndel Edgington: Not only have the ASD faithful been taken in by ASDMI, they also have been taken for a ride by ASDMBA too. ……At some point you hope that people would finally wise-up and not get taken again; but alas with the people in ASD that does not seem to be the case.

    Hi Lynn,

    It is more than just ASDMI and ASDMBA that are designed to extract more money from ASD victims.At least ASDMI and ASDMBA are different spins, posing as legal actions designed to get back victims’ losses. There other many other new programs out there based loosely on ASD that are clearly mathematically Ponzi’s and are designed to “help ASD losers make up theier losses,” said losses of course caused not by the underlying Ponzi, but rather by the evil government. Some of these include AVG (Ad View Global), AGW (Ad Gate World), and a new one for me called Noobing (so named I guess because the promoters (including one prominent ASD promoter) say it’s so easy, even a newbie (new internet user, aka noobie) can do it. Patrick, can we start a list of all of the ASD-related scams somewhere as a reference for folks to avoid? Have you heard of Noobing?

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  4. Hi Entertained,

    Such a list exists in our “Autosurf Misery Index.”

    http://patrickpretty.com/2009/01/14/roster-are-these-autosurfs-in-litigation-troubled/

    Patrick

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  5. Quick note:

    Readers might want to see this post:

    http://patrickpretty.com/2009/01/30/breaking-news-bowdoin-busby-garner-boa-sued-anew/

    Compare the approach of this sophisticated law firm to the approach of ASDMI, which advocated suing the prosecutors and even charging them with crimes.

    And, longtime ASD observers will remember that, in the days just prior to news about the birth of ASDMI last fall, people putting it together were dropping hints in forums that something that would change the entire complexion of the ASD case was in the offing.

    Patrick

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  6. From the nutty professor’s new tripod page:

    http://pcmenterprises.tripod.com/

    “ATTENTION Non-Judidial Participants: If you are an ASD member who has participated in the non-judicial process, I want to notify you that I have set up a special ASD Non-Judicial Group with Yahoo in order to communicate with you and keep you informed. You have just been sent an email invite to join the group. Please join the group so I can send out periodic newsletters to keep you updated. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. Thanks, Professor Patrick Moriarty ”

    The “Non-Judicial Approach” is the name the “professor” used for the legal tactics being taught to him by Curtis Richmond.In his heyday he was charging $50 to fill out and file the forms for ASD members. Perhaps he finds it premature to dispense with that particular revenue stream.

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