MIRACLE? TalkGold Ponzi Forum Rejects Club Asteria Payment Claim From Serial Scammer ‘Ken Russo’ (AKA ‘DRdave’); CA Thread Moved To ‘Closed Programs And Scam Warnings’ Folder

Despite efforts by serial cash-gifting, cycler, HYIP and autosurf pitchman “Ken Russo” to prevent the TalkGold Ponzi forum from moving the 16-month-old Club Asteria thread to the scam folder,  TalkGold did exactly that today.

“Ken Russo,” known as “DRdave” on TalkGold, posted purported proof that he had been paid through Ponzi-friendly AlertPay on Aug. 5 for his Club Asteria efforts. But the “Ken Russo” post — and another TalkGold post from Club Asteria promoter “martyboy” that also claimed an Aug. 5 payout — apparently weren’t enough to persuade even a Ponzi cesspit such as TalkGold that Club Asteria had any cash-sucking and wealth-draining life left in it.

Club Asteria, which traded on the name of the World Bank and targeted its offer to the world’s poor, announced weeks ago that it had suspended payouts. The announcement of the payout suspension was accompanied by news that claims about Club Asteria were under investigation by Italian authorities and that Club Asteria’s PayPal account had been frozen.

Like “Ken Russo,” one of Club Asteria’s principals — Hank Needham — promoted AdSurfDaily. ASD was implicated by the U.S. Secret Service in an alleged $110 million international Ponzi scheme in August 2008. ASD President Andy Bowdoin was indicted on charges of wire fraud, securities fraud and selling unregistered securities in December 2010.

The TalkGold thread on Club Asteria had been active for eight months at the time of the Bowdoin indictment. It survived at TalkGold for another nine months beyond the Bowdoin indictment, but today was moved to the “Closed Programs And Scam Warnings” folder.

Club Asteria has been said to be scrambling to save itself, perhaps by providing members a chance to sell MLM products. Club Asteria last updated its news page on July 21, nearly a month ago.

On or about June 28, weeks prior to its most recent news update, Club Asteria announced that it had experienced a dramatic revenue plunge that had been driven by lies told by its members and bad publicity.

Two days ago, “Ken Russo” announced on TalkGold that he’d received a Club Asteria payment of $256 on Aug. 5.

“I request a withdrawal once a month and I always receive a payment,” Ken Russo claimed on the forum. “My last withdrawal request was processed in about 48 hours.”

But in a span of less than a month — between May 30 and June 27 — “Ken Russo” claimed on TalkGold that he had asked for and received three Club Asteria payments, totaling $2,032.

Even as “Ken Russo” showcased his purported Club Asteria payouts, other members of various Ponzi forums complained about not getting paid.

Club Asteria asserted it was not an investment program, even though innumerable web promos positioned it as one that paid a “passive” return of up to 10 percent a week.

Some Club Asteria members have turned their attentions to Centurion Wealth Circle, an AlertPay-enabled cycler that collapsed and is trying to resurrect itself with something called “The Tornado.”

Club Asteria enthusiast “strosdegoz,” also known as “manolo,” now is pitching Centurion Wealth Circle and “The Tornado” — on the same Ponzi boards in which he pitched Club Asteria.

TalkGold and MoneyMakerGroup are referenced in federal court filings as places from which Ponzi schemes are promoted.

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3 Responses to “MIRACLE? TalkGold Ponzi Forum Rejects Club Asteria Payment Claim From Serial Scammer ‘Ken Russo’ (AKA ‘DRdave’); CA Thread Moved To ‘Closed Programs And Scam Warnings’ Folder”

  1. Patrick:

    It does not surprise me that Ken Russo would claim he got paid. In fact I would not be surprised that CA did pay him to post that information. The real question is how much did he “really” get paid to post it? The same with martyboy.

    CA has not posted any new news, as you have pointed out, since late June. I believe they are waiting to hear the results of the Italian probe before they even think about starting any kind of payouts again. They know that investigation could well be the end of Club Asteria. But they have to try to keep the faithful in the program at least until early September when the Italian’s announce their findings. Still there is nothing stopping the Italian’s from taking more than 90 days to conduct their probe. But the 90 day period ends around September 6.

    This was merely a ploy to try to keep more of the faithful from jumping ship, like so many have been doing of late. But this news is stunning on so many fronts.

  2. Hi Lynn,

    I’d say it is likely that “Ken Russo” got paid. The reasons why Club Asteria might have paid him are open to debate. I’d speculate that Club Asteria fears a loss of street cred if it doesn’t pay him. If that’s the case, it’s probably an imprudent worry, given that people appear to have abandoned the program in droves without a thumbs-down from “Ken Russo.”

    And “Ken”, by making an “I got paid” post on TalkGold, could be trying to maintain a veneer of plausible deniability — i.e., how could anyone dare suggest he was promoting a scam and recruiting for a scam if HE is still getting paid and has the receipts to prove it?

    That theory would be full of holes, of course. It avoids the securities, registration and Ponzi dicussion altogether, and hides behind “rebates aren’t guaranteed,” for instance.

    I still think bank to July 2010, when FINRA called the HYIP universe a “bizarre substratum of the Internet.” FINRA was right!

    If a major retailer could package this much plausible deniability and put it on store shelves with the endorsement of a celebrity promoter such as “Ken Russo,” the whole planet might go to hell in a Ponzi handbasket.


  3. Geez,

    how bad is DRdave/Ken Russos’ reputation when even the mods at Talkgold don’t believe his B/S ???