Let's expose cheating investigators!

By Michael Hessenthaler

Expose the cheats - spot light shining through gap in the doors

I received this email (names removed so I won't be sued for defamation) from a woman who was cheated by a well known private investigator. I encouraged her to take all necessary action to expose the cheat. Let me know if they've encountered private investigators who take their money and produce nothing for it, not even a report, not even a receipt.

Authorities are often too lax about such crooks and take the easy road by referring complaints to Fair Trading office which handle civil business disputes. But I say this is not a civil issue, it is criminal to steal money from people seeking investigation service. We have to do all we can to ensure dishonest private investigators have their licence revoked. Let me know if you've come across a crooked PI.

The email:

Dear Sir,

I would like some advice from you. I recently sought the help of a PI because a person out there is trying to destroy my reputation and my private life by sending SMS messages and emails to me, my partner and one other acquaintance which are aimed at discrediting me and generally make my life a misery.

I wanted to know who owns the mobile number from which the messages are coming and since the police would not help, I went for what seemed to be the most professional add in the Yellow Pages.

I chose XXXXX XXXXX Private Investigators.

I don't need to tell you that I was asked to pay $650 cash upfront, no receipt was given other than acknowledgment at the back of a XXXXX & XXXXXX business card. I believe I dealt with Mr XXXX XXXXXXX. The promised information has not come and the gentleman has now hung up on me.

I find it hard to believe that this kind of thing actually goes on in this country. That they are actually allowed to advertise!!!!! The police referred me to the department of Fair Trading.

Anyway, I am now $650 poorer and still have no idea how to get to the bottom of my problem. Do you have any concrete suggestions? After all how hard can it be to figure out who owns a phone number? Please let me know if there is anyone competent and honest out there who could actually help me. I would really appreciate it.




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