Last Thursday I reported on how The Governor French Academy in Belleville is considering filling for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after being victimized by a years-long scam they just realized a few months ago.
They leased copy machines from a guy who was apparently keeping much of the money for himself. Once the guy ran out of money the prep school started getting the bills... bills from copy machine leasing companies in seven states for 14 copiers... many of which the school never had.
I've now confirmed an Edwardsville church and senior centers in Okawville and Carlyle have also fallen victim to the same scam.
The Clinton County Senior Center in Carlyle had it's copy machine repossed and they still owe thousands of dollars. The center and the other entities all have private attorneys working to try to get them out of these leases.
It's unclear how many victims there are here. The guy allegedly responsible has not been charged with a crime and as far as I can tell isn't even being sought by anyone in law enforcement. I hope I just haven't found the law enforcement agency yet and there is an investigation going on somewhere.
I'm not mentioning the guy's name since he hasn't been charged or even named a suspect.
There's clearly a lot more to this and likely a lot more innocent victims whose businesses could suffer after entering into one of the most routine office transactions... leasing a copier.