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Old 12-19-2012, 10:46 AM   #2126 (permalink)
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 224

So this is an outsider's perspective on this whole thing (and from a lawyer who has seen scams in the past). I have never had any contact with Haiku or the others involved and have really only learned about this situation from this thread.

Haiku is not brilliant. It's makes us feel better to think we got taken by a great con artist, but he'll very likely be caught. The few members who are facing suspicion of being connected to Haiku continue to respond to comments here. Given the tone of their responses, it sounds to me that they also got taken by him - as a result of their greed - but also know they are responsible for leading everyone on about Haiku's character. I don't think they thought they were part of an epic scam. Rather, they probably knew they weren't doing the right thing with respect to various comments and fake transactions with Haiku but were trying desperately to get into his good graces. They're in a tough position because they are both victims and victimizers. I think of Ponzi schemes, where people get their friends wrapped up in the scam with false promises of riches but also actually believing their friends will benefit in the long term. At the end of the day, everyone gets screwed except the guy on the very top. It's easiest to direct our anger at the ones who are still here, but the fact that they continue responding tells me that they are also victims (albeit ones trying to justify their naive and inappropriate behavior).

The right thing to do, which I doubt will happen, is to allow those who lost out on trades with Haiku to purchase back the (stolen) cards at the discount prices paid by the new owners. PayPal WILL take care of those who paid (by regular payment) without receiving cards. In scams of this size, PayPal won't take an individualized approach to each transaction - they'll look at the big picture and likely refund everyone who claims they didn't receive an item (even if Haiku provides tracking numbers for some). The biggest lesson that should be learned once this is done is that purchasing cards is very safe if done properly. Trading cards is dangerous, plain and simple.
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