Tired of your dead-end job? Why not become a convicted fraud felon and sell your secrets to the FBI!
Seriously. Meet Barry Minkow at his FDI site. (Yes, FDI, not FBI.)
Here’s a guy who once went to prison for schlepping hundreds of millions of dollars from consumers in the 1980s. He even once bunked with a convicted murderer, and his biography claims that he spent seven years in prison among many of the “nation’s leading white-collar criminals.”
Apparently, they taught him how to play the PR game to the hilt. It seems these days that most people convicted of some sort of crime tend to find God or some religion when all else fails. Folgers Coffee drinkers – take heed – you’ve got competition with Insta-Religion and Insta-Credibility poured in for good measure.
As always, to best perpetuate fraud, it requires that you establish some form of credibility with your victim. I don’t know Minkow, but his FDI website looks conspicuously like the FBI in terms of acronyms. It does sound a bit misleading. I imagine the fun I’d have if I worked at the FDI:
“FREEZE!! YOU’RE UNDER INVESTIGATION BY THE FDI!!”
“Wha- the… ?”
“Nah, man! Just joking with you! I said FDI! Not FBI! Didn’t you catch that?”
“You ok? Buddy, you ain’t looking too good. You need a what? A heart – oh, a heart attack? You’re having a heart attack? What’s the name of your church? I’ll investigate them! Don’t worry, if you die, I’ll be sure to investigate the hell outta them! Here’s my card. Praise Jesus.”
I read a bit more into the FDI website and found that Minkow thrives on killing Christian churches, even though he leads his own church. Wow! Talk about eliminating competition! Minkow has got it down pat! Jailhouse rules seem to apply to Minkow: to survive, one must eliminate the competition. Included is a "frauds gone wild" video segment on the FDI website. Imagine half-naked, barely legal girls dancing and frolicking for accountants during tax season.
The Wall Street Journal recently reported his latest target is a vitamin supplement distributor, Usana Health Sciences. Reading his responses to Usana’s defamation lawsuit had me wondering what Minkow does for a hobby. The whole website, as I mentioned previously, is one giant Minkow self-promotional blog – even if it’s hidden under the pretenses of being some institute of fraud – and I find the whole Usana vs. Minkow to be less about consumers and more about Minkow.