Victim Location 10301
Total money lost $100
Type of a scam Employment
This is long but very descriptive as this just happened to me and I am extremely disgusted and distraught. I am 22 years old and I’ve been homeless, sleeping in my car that stopped running with my mom and dog for a week now, aside from very little clothes, my laptop, camera and some money, that’s all I have. We recently were able to get in contact with my aunt and are currently staying at her place in new jersey. I was in college, but that all changed now so I was looking for a full time job to help pick up the pieces and get us back on our feet, but that is a whole other story. I was doing a job search on indeed and craigslist, I’ve been so desperate to get out of my current situation. I applied for tons of different places, mostly for custodial or janitorial type of work, full time any sort of place that would give me enough income to hold a place to live on my own. On April 7th, Thursday. I received 2 phone calls from (646)-343-9067 at 12:34 which I had missed. They called again at 12:49. I answered and on the receiving end spoke this lady with a very foreign accent. She asked if (my name) was there, I said this is him. She said she is calling in response to my job search, asking if I was still wanting the custodial/ janitorial position. She stated that the position was full time 15$ an hour, she asked if I was able to complete the tasks such as sweeping, mopping, taking out garbage and waxing floors, eager I said yes. She said ok then I will schedule you for an interview Friday at 12:30 at 132 west 31 street 15th floor, between 6th and 7th avenue in Manhattan. She asked if I have my OSHA license, and I said no I do not. She then said ok that is no problem, we will train you, just be sure to bring your social security card, your id, your resume and a 100$ money order or check, Can you do that for me? Even though I had lost my ss card due to my homeless-ness I said yes, hoping that it would be an exception. Excited I had told my aunt and mom that I had an interview for a full time position tomorrow! I had so much hope! The next morning we all had woken up early. I also had gotten myself ready for the city, my mom had only about 200$ left in which she had given me 100$ for the interview, taking a leap of faith. Being that my mom and aunt were going to the public assistance office in Staten island and I figured they could drop me off at the Staten island ferry at 11:00 so I can have time to stop somewhere in the city and get a 100$ money order. Eventually we had gotten on our way, we were running a little late and it was almost 11:30, if I missed this boat then I would most likely miss the interview and, not get hired and not get out of the homeless situation that I am in. We got to the ferry terminal at 11:27, I said my goodbyes and rushed to catch the boat. I texted my mom "I made it :)". On the boat I had looked up directions with my phone using the wifi. "Take the 1 train to 28th street and walk down 7th ave and turn right onto 31st street.". I got off the ferry at 12:00 I was looking at the time thinking I hope I make it. I get off the ferry and go into the mta train station, I use the last 6 dollars I had to fill a metro card just as the 1 train was pulling in. I just caught the train. On the train ride I was super anxious, what do I say, I hope I get the job, this would be great. Mind you I was wearing black sweatpants, sneakers, a black and grey stripped sweater and a grey fleece over it. I did not have any razors so I had somewhat of a stubble on my face and deck, I brushed my hair as best I could. But I was just praying that all goes well. I get off the train and I look at the time, 12:17, so I am thinking in my head, ok I have just a little bit of time to get a money order, cross from the 1 train was a Duane Reade, I went in, looked around and I walked back to the pharmacist and asked if they make money orders here. She responded and motioned me to try asking one of the associates at the front of the store. So I did, he asked to give him a moment, so I patiently waited, he asked, how much would you like to make out onto this money order, I said 100$ please, he then said ok your total will be 100.99$. I gave him 101$. Moments later he printed out a western union money order for me. I asked, that’s it? He said, do you want the penny? I said oh no, as I am rushing. I quickly left and continued down 7th avenue and turn on 31st, passing other buildings, 157, 152 eventually, 132 Penn plaza. I walked in and I see an man standing behind the security booth. And I said hello I am here for an interview with "ms. sanchaigo". I’m supposed to be going to the 15th floor. He looked at the book and said, we do not have a "ms. sanchaigo" here. Do you know the company who is employing you? I told him the lady had a very thick accent and I tried to sound out the name of the company to him, and I wrote down what she said her name sounded like. He asked to try and call the number that called me again. First time, no answer. Second time I left a message, third time the lady picked up and I said hello yes I am at the location at the front desk, would you be able to tell me the company name? Again she spoke but her accent was in audible, even when she was spelling out the name. I told the man at the desk and he look again, no ms. but however we have a Mr. Santiago here, let me try to call the 15th floor. He makes a phone call and speaks to the guy on the other line. Still no clue. After he gets off the phone he said he will let me up to the floor but just to take my id to sign me in. I thanked him very much. I went up to the 15th floor as at first I was confused at the concept at the elevators and got out on the 11 floor at first, the man there then re directed me on how the elevators work and re directed me to the 15th floor. Once I got out of the elevator, I called the 646 number again, the lady picked up again. I notified her that I was on the 15th floor but I am unsure which room I was to go to as there were many. She then said that there should be a person at a front desk, speak to them and let them know that you have an appointment. And she hung up. I walked around briefly and I entered a semi open area and I see a man there having a discussion or rather a debate with a fed ex delivery man. Afterwards I approached the man and the desk and told him that I was here for an interview for a type of custodial job. He asked who I was to see and I showed him the name on the paper "sanchaigo" and explain to him the lady I had been speaking with on the phone. He then said oh you are probably here to speak to Mr. Santiago, I figure the lady you spoke with on the phone, you will not be speaking to now, take a seat here and give me one moment. So I sit down. A few minutes later another guy approaches me in a suit that was brownish and he was wearing an orange-ish, peachy type of shirt and tie, he was tall, balding, but had grey and black pigtails, tanned skin, almost a triangular pointed head and buck yellow teeth sticking out. He spoke with a type of lisp and said ok just give me one moment and he walked back down a corridor, he came back and said, just another moment. I waited some more. He then motioned for me to follow him, so I did. We passed a few offices and then we stopped and one with a door open and a man sitting down at a computer. The man in the suit motioned for me to sit down and he walked away. The man at the computer said hello (my name) I am Mr. Santiago, he looked a little younger, lighter complexion but beige still, short cut hair with a suit as well, he also had a type of ring on his finger, thick and silver with what looked like black grunge in the crevices. He said ok so you are here for the custodial janitor position. I said yes. He explain to me the duties of the job and such the sweeping, mopping, using the wax machines etc. He asked if I had the 100$ cash or money order and I said yes as I was about to pull it out to give to him. He said we’ll don’t give it to me just yet but in case you are hired, you have it. So then he asked if I was looking for full time or part time employment, I said full time. He pronounced my last name and said, that’s Nigerian isn’t it, I said yes, but I am mixed race and I explained my background, he asked if I spoke any of the native languages but I said no. "So, what makes you capable of this type of job?" I explain that I preferred jobs in which I don’t have to deal with customers as much and that I just have a set task to do and I thought it would be an interesting field to work in. He asked if I go to school, I said that I did but certain circumstances have come up in which I have left school as to why I am here today applying for this full time job, that I currently do not have a permanent place to stay and that this job would help me get out of the situation that I am in. I said that this isn’t a job that I want, it is a job that I need and I am willing to excersize all options to get my daily tasks of the job done. He said then, well you sound convincing so i’ll tell you what, congratulations, you are hired. And he extended his hand. Shaking his hand I felt a huge weight come off of my shoulders, thinking yes I am getting somewhere. He said ok now being that you are hired I will take this money order, this is a deposit for the 450$ training class you will take next Friday and then the week afterwards you will receive your work uniform etc. So if you can come in next Friday 3:30 to 9:30 and bring the remaining 350$ with you. I just need you to sign here and here. I quickly signed and I shook his hand again. He said ok just give me once second and I will make a copy, of this and your i.d. He asked to keep my resume and I said yes, as I had brought an additional copy with me. He then gave me a receipt and a copy of what I had signed and he said ok Gabriel, thank you very much, once again congratulations and he shook my hand once more. I left there so happily, I was thinking this is it, this is my way out, I called my mom and aunt about the good news. When I met up with them again in Staten island my mom was in tears. As we were heading back to my aunts home in new jersey. I slowly started to read the fine print of what I had signed and my heart slowly sank. It stated:
I (my name) certify that I was not guarantee any employment by Instant Consultation Inc.
By signing this agreement I (my name) understand the following
All training are taught by N.Y.S Licensed Instructors
All I training includes All Supplies & Services
I understand that I am only paying for training and I am not paying for a job
I understand that job placement assistance is a free service offered upon completion of training and that job placement assistance is the process where I will be applying for employment with potential employers.
There is a non refundable fee at the time of registration for training. This fee includes ALL deposits made and will reserve a seat in the class. After the start of any training, any additional payments will also be non- refundable.
Student signature (my signature) and date
Representative signature (santiago signature) and date
I was a little suspicious so I decided to look online and found that many people have been ripped off by these con-men, that they would deceive you with the promise and handshake of employment.
I am so angry, how foolish could I be, and I am so angry that this man after hearing me tell him that I have nothing, could still lie to my face and steal my last bit of money, money that belonged to my mother, money that WE NEEDED. But we took a leap of faith. That he has the nerve to tell me "Congratulations, you’re hired." This, this right here, should be a crime against humanity. It is Saturday morning as I am up and so angry, how can I tell my mother after so much joy we have expressed, that we have been deceived? I am unsure what to do.
There must be some sort of legal action that can be taken. That perhaps to catch these people that there is something that they have to sign that states that THEY understand that I have read all terms of agreement and that they have adequately explained the terms of agreement and not a sort of persuasion to sign it or a deception. I still have all the papers and I am back tracing every phone call, the application I had sent in, everything. It is Saturday, April 9th, 2016 and the class is supposedly next week April 15th, 2016, 3:30 to 9:30. I feel like I want to storm in there and demand for my money back, but I feel like security would be called. Even more that these people would try to steal from people that have nothing, they do not deserve to live. That is how I feel.
There must be something that can be done. To my understanding the OSHA training is less than 100$. Why are there terms in the agreement that contradict each other? That "I understand that I am only paying for training"? Then why is there a non refundable fee at time of registration. Hell then I need some change back from that 100$. If "I understand that job placement assistance is a free service offered upon completion of training and that job placement assistance is the process where I will be applying for employment with potential employers." Then who are these people here? Why did they tell me that I was hired? If the OSHA program for a 10 hour class is less that 100$ then who are these N.Y.S certified people that are doing the training for 450$. How does the 31st Penn Plaza allow a scheme like this to go unchecked and un regulated in the building. There must be something that can be done.