Buy, Sell, & Rent Timeshare Condos
 
A reader has sent in a warning about a potential timeshare rental scam allegedly involving Property Marketing Group in Chicago and International Closing Company located in New Orleans. The reader believes these groups are running a marketing scam, where they cold call timeshare owners with a unbelievably high rental offer that requires the timeshare owner "prepay" maintenance fees before receiving any promised rental proceeds.

"...Property Marketing Group in Chicago and International Closing Company in New Orleans seem to be running a blind call timeshare rental scam requiring a wire transfer of maintenance fees before the deal can close. Glad we found your web site describing a very similar scam before falling for this one. That $20,000 did seem a bit too good to be true. Thanks- Scott W..."

If you believe that you have been a victim of a timeshare scam involving other of these "companies", please take the time to report the crime to the Attorneys General in Illinois, Louisiana, as well as your home state and the state where your timeshare resort is located. Reporting timeshare fraud is the most effective way to combat these type of schemes.

You can locate contact information for all the United States Attorney Generals at the website www.naag.org.



 


Comments

Jim Litz
09/09/2011 1:41pm

Oh my! Glad I found this. I think I'm in the middle of similar scam with both Property Marketing Group and International Closing Company. I was cold-called in July by Luis Martinez with a "pre-approved buyer" offering $32000US for a timeshare we own Cancun, Mexico. Sounded too good to be true. But a web search seemed to indicate this organization was legitimate. Things moved forward with a "title search" conducted by Kelly from International Closing Company. Caller ID checked out with the phone number at their web site (which may itself be a scam?). Then we were told we had to wire $3200 to cover the closing costs, but we be reimbursed by the buyer, and that they already had the buyer's funds. Obvious question would have been "then why not pay those costs from the buyer's funds that you already have". But I didn't think to ask that question. A couple weeks go by and now we've been informed that "Mexican tax laws on timeshare sales have changed and we'll need to pay $6020 to cover those taxes up front". "But don't worry, the buyer will reimburse you and we already have their money in escrow." Now I'm finally real suspicious and do some more digging, discovering this web page and others alerting to this sort of scam. I'm done with them, even though I'm out $3200. Crazy.

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George
09/15/2011 1:24pm

Yeah, am I glad I found this post. I got a cold call re selling our time share in San Jose Del Cabo from Property Marketing Group / International Closing Company. We paid 13K for the unit and were offered #35000 by a 'corporate' buyer. (too good to be true) Only after a lot of fax exchanges / promises the buyers money was in escro etc were we informed we would need to wire a $3500 up front fee. Were are shining them on now. If anyone wants to buy our Playa Del Sol unit please let us know--will get a good price.

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Mike
09/20/2011 7:12pm

I too received a cold call from Danny Martinez from Property Marketing Group in Chicago (312) 924-0724. They claim they have a corporate buyer for our 1 week, 2 Bdrm unit for $45,000 at Club Regina in Cancun. I received a call from Kelly at International Closing Company (504) 717-2821 in New Orleans. She claimed to have funds on deposit for the entire closing costs and reimbursable closing costs and transfer fees.

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Bob
09/30/2011 9:23am

Has anyone ever gone to the conclusion and definitely been scammed? The bait and hook with too much return for the property is a sure sign of fraud. Are there any means to stop this? Can these people be prosecuted?

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Rodney
10/03/2011 11:55am

I believe I have been scammed by both companies for my timeshare property with David Mendoza from Property Management Group in Chicago and Kelli Thompson of International Closing Company in New Orleans. Not getting any return calls after putting out a lot of mony. Any help from anyone with knowledge would be appreciated.

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Louis
10/07/2011 10:38am

Folks, this is a SCAM. Remember the cardinal rule - "if it seems to good to be true, it probably is!" I have done research on this company for the benefit of a client and have found that they have never operated out of the office building that appears on their contract form (Inspire Building Center). In fact, the building managers are trying to hunt these folks down as well to try and put an end to the number of people calling them trying to complain about Property Marketing Group. This company targets those who own timeshares outside of the USA, with the promise that nothing needs to be paid up front, and that they will take their fees out of the sale (as the money is already in escrow waiting for the sale to be completed). As you proceed toward the closing they will inform you that there is a tax issue (or some other fee relevant to the host country that we would not realize in the USA) and that you need to pay it, but will get your money back at closing - HOWEVER, there is never a closing, and there is never money coming your way. And, for those who are crazy enough to pay the fee by a personal check, you run the risk of your account being drained in the near future. Do your research - and stay away from Property Marketing Group.

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John Beckenbach
03/24/2014 1:23pm

Almost the same situation except I was dealing with Allied Escrow International. I was offered a large sum of money but would have to pay $4400 in taxes that Mexico would charge. It was no problem though because the would just add the charge to the sale price. Checked the Better Business Bureau and found the company listed with a narrative that was almost identical to my problem. I also talked to a lawyer who said Mexico does not tax time share sales. Watch out for Allied Escrow International.

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10/26/2011 12:40pm

Glad to see I'm not the only one having problems with PMG and ICC. I suspected something in the beginning. Luckily, I only paid the prepaid closing costs, about $3,000. Now they want an additional $5,500 for taxes.I'm delaying further activity until I can find a legal avenue to go after them.

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Charles Alexandder
11/01/2011 11:04am

Looks like I got taken too. Is there any legal recourse?

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Dave
11/16/2011 3:40pm

I wish we had seen this website before we got involved with PMG and ICC. We even received a guarantee of the return of our outlay for expenses if we were not reimbursed by November 10, which we were not. Does anyone have a suggestion in regards to legal action? This is terrible and these people should be prosecuted.

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Got scam?
11/18/2011 7:14am

Ahh... I was just taken for 3k on this scam. International Closing Company and Continental Resources. They are very good at what they do. Names to look for are James Brooks, Betty Williams, Michael Thompson and Kelly Thompson.
Any advice on how to retrieve my money that has been lost in this mess?

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RJA scam
11/18/2011 4:58pm

Continental Resources
I am currently in a timeshare scam (I believe). The company that I have been working with is Continental Resources and International Closing Company. Continental Resources has received $2,400 from me to this point. I have not released any funds to ICC. ICC was to transfer the escrow balance to me but can't seem to reach anyone. I have had continuous contact with Continental and they seemed concerned as well. Am I caught in a partnership scam here? Also, I think Continental resources may be an alias of property marketing group and ICC possibly the new form of international closing services. Anything I can do?

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Scott W
11/20/2011 7:29am

The FBI has finally opened an investigation into this scam (Case 196D-SC-45356).

This scam group has apparently changed names and phone numbers. If you inadvertently got a contract (from another entity) still using 'PMG' or 'Property Marketing Group' PLEASE EMAIL ME ASAP.

If you have been scammed by this group please contact me at scott1w(at)deserado.com and I will place you in contact with the investigating agent with the FBI (using using @.fbi.gov email address so you know there is no funny business).

We are trying to get documentation on how many dollars these people have scammed. The higher dollar amount the more likely we will get cooperation from the Mexican gov't.

Also, file a complete report at www.IC3.gov

Scott

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John
05/08/2012 10:46pm

I have been contacted and have two quotes from Approved Property Management from two different locations.

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Frank
12/08/2011 3:04am

I've been put in touch with James Brooks by World Luxury Destinations. He put me in touch with Eagle Market Solutions out of Houston. I'm using extreme caution at this point. Has anybody here been members with World Luxury Destinations?

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MICHELLE
05/02/2012 3:20pm

JAMES BROOKS SOUNDS TOO FAMILIAL TO ME. HE OFFERED A HUGE LUMP SUM FOR THE MAYAN PALACE RESORT I HAVE AND ONCE I GOT MY LAWYER TO CALL HIM HE DISAPPEARED.

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Helen
02/20/2012 4:27am

I too have been scammed by Continental Resources to the tune of $6000+. This fee was rolled into the "guaranteed" selling price, to be received within 60 days. I was contacted by William Garcia from World Property Connections out of Houston Texas with a Resale Contract. James Brooks from Continental Resources immediately sent a release letter stating they had met their obligation and were no longer involved. Bye money. WPC uses Advantage Trust International in Chicago as closing company 312-546-3306 @ 8% commission which states they have funds in trust. Yeah, sure!

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Dave
02/21/2012 9:59pm

I purchased from World Luxury Destinations, was processed by James Brooks at Continental Resources and referred to a "listing broker", James Garcia of World Property Connections in Houston who then passed me on to a "purchasing broker", Rose at Advantage Trust International in Chicago. The latter has requested over $7000 in transfer fees for a Mayan property and maintenance fees for renting out 10 weeks at our new place with WLD in Puerto Vallarta. (I will not send any $.)

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Paul
02/24/2012 10:55am

I signed a contract with WLD and Continental Resources in December in Puerto Vallarta. I purchased "weeks" and sold back 4 weeks to Continental Resources for which they were to pay me $4800 per year starting in January. When I called to ask where the check is, they said I would be paid in November? It was the infamous James Brooks who took my call. He would not provide me contact information for the president of Continental Resources (John Morgan?) or World Luxury Destinations (John Monte).

It looks like I have been scammed.

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Peter
06/28/2012 10:50pm

I have also been scammed for over $75,000 by these guys.

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Kathie
02/28/2012 11:47am

My husband and I were scammed by WLD and Continental Resources to the tune of $35K in November 2011. Although we contacted our credit card company withing 2 business days and wrote to both companies to cancel the contracts we have had no positive results. Citicard is doing their best to avoid helping us and has been "reviewing" the case since November 7th when we discovered this was a fraud set up. Apparently Citicard only considers it fraud if they steal your card and charge with it. We have been told the lengthy review is due to the amount and that it is an international transaction. Interestingly in the past Citicard has locked our card for fraud alert for a charge as small as $200 USD. It seems their fraud program didn't think $35,000 was unusual.

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Kathie
03/13/2012 2:10pm

I finally called Mastercard last night to find out the status of our claim. In a word "denied". Apparently they don't care about anything we have done to cancel the contract and said since the receipt was signed there has been no fraud.

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Kathie
03/21/2012 4:20pm

World Destination Resorts is run by the same people who created Platinum Access Program, same location, same people, same scam. In fact their website is still accessable.

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Michelle
04/10/2012 6:11pm

I was approached with a similar situation but it was through Approved Property Management. Does anyone know if there is any connection to this company as well? The names they used were Martin Schlesinger and Carol Silver, but also in Chicago.

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Mary Short
04/24/2012 1:03am

I was also approached by Approved Property Management of Chicago (Olivia Hennessey). Did you get any feedback on them? They also said that their buyer is willing to pay a very high price. Doesn't sound legit. I'd appreciate feedback. Thank you.

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Peter Osmond
04/27/2012 3:37pm

I am also getting calls from Approved Property Management of Chicago. They are not asking for money up front but quote very large numbers for the property

Nancy Patzer
05/01/2012 8:34pm

I have been called by Approved Property Management of Chicago. Promise of large sum for Grand Luxxe. Vague terms in contract require payment of "taxes" ( & other fees) within 5 days of signing contract. Sounds suspicious to me as they are not Chicago BBB approved and not in YellowPages.com. Any positive info on them?

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Linda
05/10/2012 5:44pm

I have also been scamed to the tune of $2800 wired to a Mexican Bank for closing costs with no funds placed in my bank account.
They were under the name of Allied management and escrow was American advantage title. You cannot reach either company with their phones disconnected. I have now been approached by INT Closing company who wants sales tax to settle the deal. I'm sure they are trying to scam me also, but are playing along to get all the info.

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Luis
06/27/2012 8:32pm

All together we should open a case www.ic3.gov working in conjunction with the FBI.

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