Rakuten Travel Wayne Associates Villa del Palmar IBFC New York Bank

Dylan –

Victim Location 94117

Total money lost $4,200

Type of a scam Other

I was contacted via phone by Mia F. a women from Rakuten Travel who said they were buying timeshares to rent out to travelers. I then started dealing with Bryce Flores at Rakuten. Their phone number is 1-877-353-5357. We negotiated a price and got their lawyers involved, Wayne & Associates (www.wayneatlaw.com). I looked them up by their license number and they are a registered law firm in Colorado. BarCard #1441. I then called Villa del Palmar (Villa) via the Resortcom phone number and explained to them that I would be transferring my membership and they said they would be emailing me a form to [email protected], complete it, send back and there would be a transfer fee. At this time there was no mention that the form had to be mailed in or the fee had to be paid via check. They also did not say to ONLY deal with someone at Resortcom and no one else at Villa.

I discussed with Resortcom in depth the buyer being Rakuten Travel and asked lots of questions about this being a scam or not. Not one time did your company tell me that I needed to mail the form in pay the transfer fee by check. I never ended up receiving the email with the transfer agreement attached so asked Resortcom to resend. I still did not receive. I then received a phone call from Victor Martinez at Villa, who said he was in Member Services asking if I had received the transfer form and I told him I did not. So he sent it to my gmail email address whereby I received it. I had many many many conversations with Victor Martinez at 1-877-353-5267. I also had many conversations with Bryan Tanner and Robert Rodriguez (Robert is Bryan’s boss) at Wayne & Associates law firm. 720-360-0767; email address – [email protected] I received the Rakuten purchase agreement from Wayne & Associates and the Annex form from Victor Marinez who told me that the transfer fee is 10% of the purchase price and I had to wire it Villa directly. I would be reimbursed the transfer fee by Rakuten once the purchase agreement was approved by Villa. So I called Resortcom again to verify the 10% and the agent said yes that is correct if you transfer it to a company and not a family member. I was never told I had to mail this in and NOT to wire transfer it. I signed the Annex and sent to Victor. He then said he got it approved by Villa Group and sent it back with "Approved" on it. I then sent that to Wayne & Associates. I ensured that Villa and only Villa would be receiving my transfer fee as Victor told me Villa would give it back to me if the deal did not go through. I was very concerned and thought carefully to not send the monies to anyone but Villa as I knew it would be a scam if anyone else was to receive.

After I gave the transfer fee to Villa, I would then receive my monies from Rakuten. I wired $4,200 (10% of $42,000 purchase price) plus $50 wire fee to Villa del Palmar bank account.

I dealt with all the parties involved no less than 50+ times. First phone call from Rakuten happened around the end of October 2019. Began receiving emails on 11/13/19 with the Rakuten proposal. Rakuten’s lawyers, Wayne & Associates contacted me on 12/2/19 via email. We then had many many conversations. Victor Martinez from Villa del Palmar then contacted me asking if I received the transfer form and I told him I had not. He sent the form to me on 12/12/19 via email. We then had many many conversations. I then wired $4,200 to Villa del Palmar on 12/16/19

I asked Resortcom if I could sent Rakuten my contract # and they said it was ok as Rakuten could do nothing with it as only I can talk to them via phone and do a transfer

After I thought my money was lost, I started receiving calls and emails from Josh Cooper (1-917-341-2072) at IBFC New York Bank saying that they had my $44.2k ($42k plus $4.2K) and asked if my banking info was correct. They said when someone sends monies from Mexico it must go through an intermediary bank. I called IFBC directly, not the number Josh gave me, and they had no record of a Josh Cooper working there or my wire transfer due to me. A few hours later, someone from the Notification of Taxation office in Mexico called me (1-877-353-5305) saying that in order to get my monies I needed to pay $11,500 in taxes to Mexico. I called Josh Cooper back telling him this was a scam and no one knew him. He told me he was a consultant and not a regular EE. I told him I wold not be paying any more monies until I received my $44.2k. He kept saying that the monies will revert to the Mexican government. I continued to get calls from the Notification of Taxation dept in Mexico saying if I did not pay these taxes, next time I go into Mexico, they will detain me and take me to court to pay these taxes. I told them this was a complete scam and they have stopped calling.

Since this time, I have called all the above parties many times trying to get my money back but still at a dead end. Rosa (Resortcom) and I called the number above for Villa del Palmar guest services and she and the person on the phone went back and forth with Villa saying Resortcom does not work for them and cannot receive any monies. Rosa explaining to him this is not true as only Resortcom can receive monies. RESORTCOM OR VILLA NEED TO NOTIFY ALL THEIR GUESTS THAT ANY MONIES SHOULD ONLY GO TO RESORTCOM. Priot to this experience, I had no idea who Resortcom even was. I guess I learned the way.

Happy to provide any other details you might need.

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