INetGlobal Employees Ask Judge For Order That Blocks Secret Service From Interviewing Them; Claim Government Has ‘Superiority’ Mentality

The litigation against INetGlobal amid Ponzi scheme allegations is turning into a legal slugfest in multiple venues. On one side, federal prosecutors are seeking to disqualify INetGlobal attorney Mark Kallenbach, claiming that he is attempting to be both a lawyer and a witness in the same case.

Now, employees of INetGlobal are seeking a protective order that effectively would block the U.S. Secret Service and other law-enforcement agencies “from contacting these represented individuals and requesting interviews.”

Attorney Paul Engh filed the motion in federal court on behalf of INetGlobal’s 70 employees, arguing that he is the gatekeeper for the employees’ legal interests and that the government has approached an unspecified number of employees without going through him.

“These approaches have been made on a cold-call basis, at [employees’] homes, at night or in the early morning hours, and all without notice to counsel,” Engh said in a brief.

His request that the practice stop was “refused,” Engh argued, asserting that the government claims “that since the employees are on laid off status. . . they are no longer employees.”

“Having been an employee is a status that doesn’t disappear because the Government wants it to,” Engh asserted. “None were fired.”

At least one employee — Donald Allen, a former vice president of a company related to INetGlobal and its operator Steve Renner — said earlier this week that he had his own attorney and was cooperating with the Secret Service and federal prosecutors.

Allen said he was approached by the Secret Service, which appeared at his home unannounced a week ago today, and was asked by the agency if he wanted an attorney. Allen said that he answered yes, and described his first meeting with the agency as “excellent.”

Allen said he was advised he had “exposure” in the case. He denied he had done anything wrong, saying he was not privy to INetGlobal’s internal financial workings.

On Tuesday, Allen said he had a second meeting with the Secret Service April 26, adding that he is cooperating in the investigation “100 percent.”

Also on Tuesday, Steve Renner went to Hennepin County Court in Minneapolis and obtained a restraining order against Allen, claiming that Allen was harassing and threatening him and trying to extort $100,000 from the company.

Allen said that what Renner claimed to be extortion was actually an attempt to work out a severance package.

The extortion claim was the second against a former INetGlobal employee. Former CEO Steven Keough was accused in court filings by Renner last month of trying to extort $500,000 from the company. Keough may be the government’s star witness in the case. The Secret Service said Keough had come to believe that Renner had hired him to be a “good face” for the company and that Renner had fired him for asking too many questions.

Engh argued in his brief yesterday that the government appeared to be ignoring his duty as counsel to INetGlobal employees “on some federalist notion of superiority or entitled sense of un-accountability.”

Separately, some members of INetGlobal have asserted the government is not playing fair. Similar claims were made in the prosecution of the assets of the AdSurfDaily autosurf. The government ultimately won three separate orders of forfeiture totaling more than $80 million in the ASD case.

ASD President Andy Bowdoin, whose company has been linked to international fugitive Robert Hodgins, who allegedly laundered money for a Colombian drug cartel, has filed an appeal. The ASD case has been in litigation since the Secret Service raided the company’s Florida headquarters in August 2008. The ASD case is referenced in filings by the prosecution in the INetGlobal case that allege an undercover agent was introduced to INetGlobal by an ASD member who promoted the program despite describing it as a wink-nod enterprise.

Renner, who was convicted in December of four felony counts of income-tax evasion and is awaiting sentencing, has not been charged in the INetGlobal case. The government seized about $26 million in its investigation into Renner’s business practices, and prosecutors have argued that Renner is attempting to get the government to expose its case before a formal action is brought.

Renner has denied wrongdoing, and the companies have said they are legitimate enterprises.

About the Author

2 Responses to “INetGlobal Employees Ask Judge For Order That Blocks Secret Service From Interviewing Them; Claim Government Has ‘Superiority’ Mentality”

  1. “Attorney Paul Engh”, how many of those does Inetglobal actually have? Every time they appear in the news, also a new name appears as their attorney, not sure if that is an US-American thing or what. Can somebody enlighten me? SY

  2. Well this one is ostensibly representing the employees. However changes in attorneys is not unknown in the ponzi world. Andy Bowdoin of ASD fame has been through a few. For some reason they find him difficult to represent. lol