Pyramid Scheme Alert president, Robert FitzPatrick, recently wrote a news and analysis article in the popular forum, Seeking Alpha, about the Stream case as it relates to the history of all MLMs involving charges of racketeering and pyramid schemes. The case may affect the larger issue of MLM as inherently fraudulent where the income “opportunity” depends upon recruiting and individual profitable retailing is largely non-existent or impossible on a sustained basis. The case may also be relevant also to the most recent RICO case brought against Herbalife.
The United States Supreme Court has ruled that it will not hear the appeal by the Texas-based MLM, Stream/Ignite, leaving standing the class action certification granted by the US 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. After years of evasive court room tactics by Stream, this ruling finally clears the way for the case to move forward. It affects more than 200,000 consumers who paid hundreds in fees to join Stream’s bogus “income opportunity.”
The non-profit consumer education site, Truth in Advertising, wrote an amicus brief supporting the victims in this case, as did the AARP. Pyramid Scheme president, Robert FitzPatrick, served as expert in the case on behalf of victims. Stream purports to resell gas and electricity utility services to consumers. Like other MLMs, its true “product” is the recruiting-based “income opportunity.” It closely resembles the North Carolina MLM, ACN, promoted by Donald Trump.
The Supreme Court’s “Order List” is dated October 2, 2017. listing the case as 16-1309 S.G.E. MANAGEMENT, ET AL. V. TORRES, JUAN R., ET AL.
The 5th Circuit Appeal Court ruling, which now governs the Stream pyramid scheme/RICO case, is an extraordinary decision regarding the nature of MLM pyramid schemes. See it HERE.
PSA would like to hear of the experiences of more consumers who currently are involved or have ever joined Stream. Send your experience to [email protected]