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Leads: Broker wins refund after Whittingham no-show

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Australian Broker | 11 May 2009, 11:00 AM Agree 0
Mortgage broker Stan Marinis has won his case against lead provider, HLSS, after its director Mark Whittingham failed to show up to the VCAT mediation.

  • Diane Bennett | 11 May 2009, 12:31 PM Agree 0
    Our company has been scammed by this fellow in recent months also. My next stop will be VCAT
  • Grant | 11 May 2009, 01:13 PM Agree 0
    I too am owed money by the charming Mr Whittingham. The VCAT will be getting a claim from me now too.
  • Nick French | 11 May 2009, 01:35 PM Agree 0
    We have fallen into the same trap, currently awaiting refund and commencing legal action against Mark and Co.
  • Bystander | 11 May 2009, 01:51 PM Agree 0
    Has anyone thought that maybe this guy is using a false name? Guys like this can't possibly be that stupid to use his real name if he is going to rip so many people off. Why do you think he did a no show? Hate to say it guys but you might not see your money again. Hopefully if all goes well he will get caught and goes to prison.
  • Scott Beattie | 11 May 2009, 02:13 PM Agree 0
    So, what happens now? Assuming he didn't turn up to court, I am assuming that he isn't going to pay the $$ either.
  • another ripped off broker | 11 May 2009, 02:20 PM Agree 0
    That doesn't sound like him.... maybe he was at a more expensive court case in a diffent court!! maybe he lost track of all his VCAT cases... afterall he was there twice on Wednesday..
  • Brisbane Broker | 11 May 2009, 02:27 PM Agree 0
    Yes!!!! I will forward my claim to VCAT 2. Mark has had plenty time to correct his wrong. Its just a pitty that we have to take the time and pay more money to get a refund that was prommised by this no-show thief. He shoud be paying us compensation for our time and money waisted.
  • Gavin Mandri | 11 May 2009, 02:46 PM Agree 0
  • Vincent Wang | 11 May 2009, 03:25 PM Agree 0
    I think VCAT is probably the way to go to get the money back for me as well.
  • Noel | 11 May 2009, 04:41 PM Agree 0
    My business is in WA. I contacted the VCAT re a claim and they state that the claimant must be in attendance at the hearing. It would cost more in fares and time to recoup the monies if you are based in another state other than Victoria. If there are any suggestions i would appreciate to hear them. Why can't a class action from all burnt be taken out?
  • Branislav Sovacki | 11 May 2009, 09:00 PM Agree 0
    Just read on internet your stories about HLSS and I and my organisation have some problem with him but I was ignored because I think that happen only to me but now see is not just one case.
    I contact him First time on 02/06/08 than 4/06/08 he send me email that website will be available from 16/06/08 after few emails and 20 days waiting he send me email they have problem with website.
    Contact him and send email to canceled contract and with few emails he send me email and promise
    “ I will arrange for payment to your card when I get back next week” that was on 27/06/08
    I try contact him every week and allways goes into ansfering machine and one day 07/07/08 he send me email
    “Sorry I missed your call the other day,
    But I have been away for the past ten days.
    Can you please notify us by email the cancellation of your service so that I can arrange the refund?”
    And that on 15/07/08 got another email
    “Dear Branko,
    Your refund will be processed with our accounts towards the end of the month.”
    That months never come
    In January 2009 contact him via phone and I didn’t been so nice with him and promise him that we will be see each other someday in future in for eyes.I know wasn't nice from me but...
    If you need any more information please don’t hesitate contact me 0404 804 808
  • G | 11 May 2009, 09:06 PM Agree 0
    I got ripped off as well. I reported this guy to both the FBAA & MFAA and their responses is that it was a "commercial" relationship between our businesses and does not involve them (amazing the same response from both). How come they do not warn their members about unscrupulous operaters ripping off their members?

    If they had listened and a warning sent out, many of you would have been saved the same embarrassment.

  • Robert | 11 May 2009, 09:32 PM Agree 0
    Banks slashing commissions and providing a lousy service, MFAA charging through the nose for membership and providing an equally questionable service, forthcoming additional government fees when the new Federal legislation comes in, Mark Whitingham scamming brokers, what's the difference? They're all in it for what they can rip-off the broker. It seems they're all as bad as each other.

    Maybe it's time for an association to be formed to represent brokers' interests.
  • Jacob | 11 May 2009, 10:54 PM Agree 0
    I have been scammed by this guy. What can I do to get my money back? Can someone help I still have all his emails on file.
  • Sam Karic | 11 May 2009, 11:43 PM Agree 0
    How about getting the MFAA or the FBAA to send a BLANKET EMAIL to every broker in the country .....DO NOT DO ANY BUSINESS WITH MARK WHITTINGHAM and or HLSS or WHATEVER HE CALLS HIMSELF !!!!!!!!!!
  • MIchael Kelly | 12 May 2009, 08:12 AM Agree 0
    Unfortunately I am another victim to add to the list. VCAT here we come...If enough findings are held up against him there may be a case for action to be taken by an bocy like the ACCC. They need repeated proof before they can act- so take him to VCAT for the sake of everyone else to come.
  • Michael Kelly | 12 May 2009, 08:14 AM Agree 0
    I'll be your temporary agent for VCAT in vic if you like. Michael - 0404 355 808
  • another ripped off broker | 12 May 2009, 10:08 AM Agree 0
    FOR THOSE WHO ARE OFF TO VCAT OR LODGING..get together and get your cases heard together.. it can be done!you need each others file number and a dam good letter! ask VCAT how..ignore any games Mr Whittingham plays.... especially ignore the new Lead Market emails...

    SAM & G ... you will find the MFAA did do a blanket email to all brokers saying to be vary of a dodgy lead company. Thats is how most of us got into contact with each other...
  • huxster | 12 May 2009, 04:18 PM Agree 0
    maybe someone should drop details to one of the current affair programs on tv , they would probably love a story like this. name and shame might be they way to go, they would also maybe look into associated businesses he trades under to warn consumers as well
  • hlssa | 12 May 2009, 04:44 PM Agree 0
    HLSSA home loan selection services, my mortgage, lead search and now lead market. beware of all 4! smae same. lead market comes form but it spells out HLSSA.
  • Walter F | 12 May 2009, 04:58 PM Agree 0
    No leads or the lack of quality, or even being ripped of, the only real alternative is to get your own leed generator who works for you and then they will do the job you want them to do
  • David Smithers | 12 May 2009, 09:03 PM Agree 0
    I have had a long talk to another broker tonight, and what I would like to say is this,

    1) I think that for anyone who has been affetced by Mark Whittingham or his companies that the recovery of money, no matter how small or large should be done as this person has affected us all in different ways.

    2) I think that all of the brokers that have been affected by him that we do need to ensure that the proper action is taken, and this is to ensure that ACCC and ASIC are notified and that they actually will ensure that he is no longer able to trade or be a director of a company in the future.

    3) I think that if we are unable to get our money back, that proper debt recovery action is taken against his companies (judgment or court writ) so that ultimately he doesn't have the power to try and get away with this; and

    4) I think that our industry body, MFAA or FBAA or both do need to step in to warn their members about this person so that it doesn't impact on other brokers, but also more importantly that other lead generation systems that are valid do not get a stigma surrounding their own businesses due to this one bad apple.

    I am more than happy for anyone to contact me on 1300 768 973 which is my office number to discuss any of this.

    After speaking with another broker about him, I am absolutely dishearted by what this person has done not only to myself but to other brokers in the industry, and that we are professional business owners and do not need to have this type of activity going on, but also more importantly that we are seen as a professional industry in relation to this situation, rather than individual people.

    I really hope that anyone that is reading this will agree with me in what I am saying.
  • David Smithers | 12 May 2009, 09:11 PM Agree 0
    If anyone needs further information that I have just obtained from public information such as registered offices, address of Mark Whittingham according to the ASIC documents etc, please call on 1300 768 973.

  • Walter F | 14 May 2009, 01:51 PM Agree 0
    I was once owed money and everything I tried did not get the debtor to move one inch.

    I then called a debt collector and as I recall he said (and we did) that the only way to make someone take action is to go all the way to the point of liquidating his company. That means taking the company or person to court and gaining judgement in your favour. However, at this point it is still useless because nothing forces them to pay. The next step is to take legal action to gain payment and if not paid within a certain amount of time his company is put into liquidation and all assets are sold to pay the debt. However, there was a cost of up to $3k that I had to commit to to get to this stage. But it worked and they were forced to pay including all costs. It was a very satisfactory feeling.

    Typically mugs who don't pay bills expect most people to go away in time or not have the money to commit to spend thousands to pursue.
  • john | 19 May 2009, 02:35 PM Agree 0
    The new way in lead distribution

    Through on line marketing My Mortgage will provide mortgage leads to brokers across Australia through an exclusive postcode system.

    As a member –

    1) A return policy for bogus leads etc

    2) Exclusive Mortgage leads according to postcodes nominated

    To apply to become a member simply reply to this email and an application form will be emailed to you.

    Postcodes are limited so hurry in to avoid disappointment.
  • gary | 20 May 2009, 06:33 PM Agree 0
    Good news is hes suddenly disconnected his 1800 number and his email also gone!! u must be running mark!!! karma baby karma!!
  • D Bennett | 21 May 2009, 09:20 AM Agree 0
    The data base's cannot be split up for sale

    So if you are interested buying one of these, the brokers are looking for a quick sale and will pass them on with a condition that the will be exiting the industry and will no longer use the data base.

    If you are interested please reply to this email by 5pm Friday as it will be a quick sale.
  • d Bennett | 21 May 2009, 01:43 PM Agree 0
    Dear All,
    We are sorry that we cannot get back to each of you by phone but this has been a huge response, having over 50 enquires in 1 hour this morning -
    So in order to best answer a your questions we thought that a further email would help
    1) What you receive is the name, email address, postcode and or address & limited financial info on most records.
    2) Its was derived from most people whom now own a home.
    3) The sellar is looking for approx $1 to $2 per customer
    4) Approx number of customers in each state for the larger customer data base
    VIC 9000
    NSW 10000
    The sale process is as follows –
    1) All offer must be in by the close of business Friday (With the purchaser being informed by email the same day)
    2) The seller than draws up a formal offer that includes that no further contact would be made by the seller to any of the clients
    3) Once the document is signed the seller will forward the data base in encrypted form pending confirmation of the payment
    4) Then when the payment is confirmed the encryption key will be supplied by the seller’s IT consultant.
    We thank you for taking the time to read this but if you have further questions please email

    Intersting that they cannot communicate via phone....
    really ASIC needs to get proactvie here as with VCAT
  • Shane | 22 May 2009, 07:04 PM Agree 0
    I emailed Mark 2 days ago giving him an opportunity to finally refund monies owing from non-supplied leads. The only response I got was the offer to buy leads from lead search. He has not delivered on my refund so I have now joined the list of those taking legal recourse against him. I have also referred this matter to the Police and Today Tonight given the quantity of complaints against him. If the MFAA won't take action, hopefully media publicity will bring light to Mark's actions.
  • Shane | 22 May 2009, 07:28 PM Agree 0
    Can I suggest to anyone who has been burnt by Mark Whittingham to also report this to Today Tonight. One complaint may show as a gripe against someone whereas a number of complaints is a story which also could force MFAA to act and support its members, the body whom they are supposed to represent. Please also consider taking your case to the Police. If there is grounds for charges, the greater the charges, the more likely a custodial sentence for Mark.
  • Anthony Crook | 11 Jun 2009, 12:51 PM Agree 0
    Like all of you I was conned.
    I have secured a judgement against him in the Southport Court.
  • Broker111 | 17 Jun 2009, 09:36 AM Agree 0
    This scammer is apparently selling broker databases obtained by conning brokers, who paid him a small fortune, to send their newsletters via his company. Does anybody know anything about this?
  • Broker111 | 17 Jun 2009, 09:36 AM Agree 0
    This scammer is apparently selling broker databases obtained by conning brokers, who paid him a small fortune, to send their newsletters via his company. Does anybody know anything about this?
  • DB | 22 Oct 2009, 01:36 PM Agree 0
    Our firm has just been awarded a refund of our fees from HLSS in a VCAT hearing this morning. Be warned, MW likes to worm around issues and use alternate company names to avoid payment. Har har Mr Whittinghm, your threats to me in front of witnesses regarding my comments on this forum do not worry me in the slightest, and I do enjoy the fact I have hit a raw nerve in you~!
  • Response to scammed | 27 Oct 2009, 10:21 PM Agree 0
    Hi scammed. Did you pay Mark via credit card? If so, lodge a disputed transaction report with your credit card provider for non-receipt of services paid for to apply to get your money back. Also refer your matter to the Police (fraud dept) if you believe that he has obtained funds vis deception.
  • Mark | 02 Feb 2010, 06:48 PM Agree 0
    I just emailed out roughly 4000 people from one of Mark's lists I purchased prior to christmas. What a waste of everyone's time. Sorry if your receive our email.
  • Broker | 03 Feb 2010, 05:24 PM Agree 0
    There is no point in buying these type of leads. Just put some good shoes on and get out there introducing yourself to people. THe deals will come.
  • Greg6547 | 12 Apr 2010, 12:01 PM Agree 0
    Is he also associated with "Buy a Trail" ???
  • Michele | 15 Jun 2010, 10:45 AM Agree 0
    Buy a Trail is Mark Whittingham I just checked who owns the domain name and it is him.
  • James Santo | 15 Jun 2010, 01:50 PM Agree 0
    Whats your point Michelle - Buyer Beware
  • Dave | 15 Jun 2010, 03:00 PM Agree 0
    Hi James Santo I think her point was to answer the previous question, hope this helps you.
  • Loz Talotta$ | 13 Jul 2010, 11:37 PM Agree 0
    Does anyone know where Mark resides these days or at least have his contact details? Is it Brazil? Is it Mexico? He could quite easily live comfortably for a decade in Brazil on the money that he has stolen from one person I know. If we all combined the totals of what everyone has lost I imagine he could live a lifetime in Impanema. Maybe that was the plan? Have you seen the house he lived in in Port Melbourne?

    Very nice Mark. It truly amazes me how some people sleep at night.
  • James Santo | 14 Jul 2010, 09:08 AM Agree 0
    You people would be better off spending tme sourcing your own leads than wasting your time wondering about Mark. Dear me.
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