Misconduct within the timeshare industry has been well-documented for quite some time now. Even though most unethical activity involves third party relief, buyers often feel scammed by the purchase itself. If they trusted the resort, they wouldn’t be looking elsewhere to escape the perpetual agreement. While that’s neither here nor there, if you happen to buy one, you’ll probably run into some sort of timeshare relief scam at some point in time.
When timeshare owners know what to expect from scams, it helps them avoid further remorse. It’s why we share share stories like these. You have to understand that con artists know how to sound compelling. They don’t care who they destroy along the way. Often times, timeshare owners aren’t the only ones being victimized.
This Resale Scam Stole a Lawyer’s Reputation.
After getting his identity stolen by a timeshare relief scam, Attorney David Eaton began receiving strange complaints regarding timeshare resale services. Callers were demanding a refund and claimed that Mr. Eaton had defrauded them. Initially, he labeled the occurrences as misunderstandings, but he quickly realized a bigger problem was at hand.
As more calls came in, Eaton found himself becoming emotionally involved. He started listening to the stories of victims and developed an urge to do something about the timeshare relief scam. After years of helping victims report their claims, Eaton finally persuaded Fort. Lauderdale Police Chief Anthony Holloway to look into it.
How the Timeshare Relief Scam Worked.
Investigators were able to determine the scam preyed on timeshare owners that posted advertisements on third party websites to sell their interval. When the scammers would speak to the owner, they’d claim to be David Eaton or a representative from his legal firm.
After eliciting joy by telling owners they found a buyer, they’d ask for a fee (as much as $16k) to close the deal. Buyers willingly handed over up-front costs after viewing Eaton’s reputation online. Little did they know, communication would cease once a payment was made. This is what forced them to reach out to David’s office directly.
Mark Boring Charged With Fraud.
After capturing multiple co-conspirators, the FBI used a sting initiated by Eaton to finally track down the man behind it all. Mark Boring, a high school dropout with an extensive criminal history, was caught while picking up a cashier’s check at a local Walmart. Boring later said that resale fraud appealed to him because he had a lot of success as a telemarketer and was struggling to find work. Like many con artists in the industry, Boring previously sold timeshares.
In the end, Mark Boring’s scam collected more than $2 million and defrauded over 100 people. By using untraceable phones and David Eaton’s identity for credibility, his timeshare relief scam was able to carry out the scheme for nearly a decade. On March 8, 2018, judge Virginia M. Hernandez Covington sentenced Boring to 84 months in prison with a restitution payment of $895,011.
Beware of Timeshare Relief Scams.
“He exploited my name, my standing, my image, my reputation to master this scam,” said Eaton. But it didn’t just hurt the lawyer because of the grief it caused himself. “I spent hundreds of hours listening to the poor souls because they simply wanted someone to tell.” Since many of the victims were aging women, Eaton did everything he could to bring the timeshare relief scam to justice.
Before trying to get out of timeshare ownership, do what you can to work things out with the resort. If all hope is lost, don’t rush your decision. Take the time to research all of your options so you can make a confident decision. Making a quick phone call to David Eaton before handing over thousands of dollars to Mark Boring is something hundreds of people wish they would have done.