Netherlands shuts down PlanB4You Ponzi scheme
PlanB4You launched earlier this year and targeted Europeans.
Soliciting 40 EUR investments from its affiliates, PlanB4You advertised an a 50 EUR ROI – dependent on new affiliate funds flowing into the scheme (see BehindMLM PlanB4You review).
Legally registered in the Netherlands, it wasn’t long before PlanB4You attracted the attention of local regulators.
A Dutch investigation into PlanB4You was headed up by the Fiscal Information and Investigation Service (FIOD).
FIOD’s website suggests an investigation might have been triggered following the detection of tax fraud:
If the Tax and Customs Administration suspects fraud, the matter is referred to the FIOD. The FIOD then assesses whether fraud is indeed being committed.
If this is the case, the FIOD, in consultation with the Public Prosecution Service, may decide to start a criminal investigation.
With Public Prosecutors on board, it was determined that fraud was indeed being committed within PlanB4You.
On December 18th Public Prosecutors working with FIOD shut PlanB4You down, with bank accounts belonging to the company and owner Johny Schabregs frozen.
According to one report, some 2.5 million Euros have been recovered after it was suspected the funds were part of a money laundering operation.
Cooperating with authorities in Belgium, where Schabregs is based, luxury cars and at least one property of his were also seized.
The same day Public Prosecutors and FIOD moved against Scabregs, he published the following update on the official PlanB4You blog:
After a turbulent year and with the prospect of a super year ahead, also thanks to a positive attitude and belief in this unique concept, Planb4you has decided on this grandiose action.
Scabreg’s “grandiose action” was the offering of 2 for 1 investment positions (bricks).
Buy1 brickx and get 2 brickx.
These Brickx have a 1 year fixed yield of €0.50, – per Brickx, you cannot request a withdrawal of funds from these Brickx during that year.
Affiliates would be unable to withdraw any funds for the year ROIs were paid out on the positions. Nothing suss.
What happens next is unclear. Scabregs has previously claimed that PlanB4You has “over 20,000” investors. Whether or not those that lost money will see any relief remains to be seen.
According to Dutch Public Prosecutors, ‘thousands of people in countries including the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Slovenia and Italy’ have invested in PlanB4You ‘in recent months‘.
This seems to be about Netherland rather than Norway, Dutch rather than Norwegian. Post #4 in the other thread also say “Dutch news”, “The Netherlands”, etc.
Thanks for catching that. It’s been a crazy week for MLM news and I need a break.
Must have had Norway on the mind (that and the whole Netherlands/Dutch thing is a minefield for non-Europeans to step into :)).
Country — percentage — rank in country
Netherlands 31.9% 343 (fairly impressive local rank)
Italy 19.4% 1,243
Germany 19.4% 2,226
Belgium 7.0% 840
Spain 5.1% 4,251
82.8% of visitors from 5 countries
Rank in world: 9,576 (3 month average, peak in September 2014).
Many of the visitors seemed to come in from websites related to other schemes. So it has primarily been designed for “junkies” / “serial Ponzi player” types of people.
This is a company that My Advertising Pays happily promoted on its garbage traffic exchange. Selling one Ponzi to the other….they are all the same and will all be shut down!
What A JOKE! Johny was a scam artist before in “Profitable Sunrise” and in “Banners Brokers” before – people lost money in those games in the last 3x year.
PlanB4you was a copy and setup to get that money back to the old Victims – “that was the story in the field” – but things turned out differently.
Johny was a good student and learned the dirty tricks of those 2x old scams, and now he is in trouble – he thought he got 3x million in the pocket – but the local gov did outsmart him.
Most people will not claim their money because most money is black money or the people are on welfare – all people claiming back money wil have a investigation on their current TAX status – most of them are in more money games…
The odd thing is – they keep signing up people in Amsterdam what is totally illegal and the current recruiters will also bee in Deep Shit!
The sad fact is, most of them won’t get “shutdown” by outside agencies.
The great majority of them will simply collapse of their own accord, taking with them their members’ money.
Very, very few of them have a receiver appointed and even fewer have any monies left to recover, receiver or no receiver.
Finally, I’ve been spammed with PlanB4You (I’m Dutch, or Nederlands, coming from The Netherlands or Holland).
It’s sad to see that people don’t understand what is legal and what not. Do thay really think you could get money for doing next to nothing?
Thank you for this post and your website, I’m a big fan!
I think the situation is a little different. On the 18th of this month, the news was released that the freezing of accounts and confiscation of luxury cars already took place end of August. An objection to the freezing of balances on bankaccounts was rejected by the court earlier in December.
I am from The Netherlands. When authorities confiscate those balances, it means that all money that comes in after the claim has been delivered to the banks, can be spent or withdrawn as always….so the current promotion is no surprise, as Johnny has told his membership that banks already ‘gave back the funds’…. which, given the rejection by court beginning of this month, has not been the case.
So, in order to get cash in to pay withdrawal requests, he needs money coming in that people will not be able to withdraw for a long time…..and they all keep believing.
He will file a lawsuit against these authorities now is being communicated to members. And of course the story now is that media are destroying ‘a healthy company that is doing well’…lol.
For the record, I’m not in PlanB4You, have always stated their business model was not a legal one and they shouldn’t believe all stories that are being told to them on where revenue comes from.
PlanB4you is not “shut down”. It is still an active business. The FIOD investigation happened a few months earlier. Not on december 18th.
This factual error should be corrected in my opinion. I mean that in a positive way.
The official date is august 26th: om.nl/vaste-onderdelen/zoeken/@87559/beslag-miljoenen
We did hear about this on a meeting in Amsterdam Netherlands where the founder talked quite open about it.
The recent wave of news stories is thus awkward. Considering it happened such a long time before.
This suggest that all cashflow is frozen. But this is factually untrue. The business is still in operation.
In case of PlanB4you the FIOD has to come with a final report. This will not be before next year.
PlanB4you has a business plan where they would launch 25 businesses with real products. They are manifesting, but obviously too slow.
There is now a food business (toko johny) , food supplements (pharma) , a mobile app etc. But there are 22+ more plans that are promised to be realized. Hopefully a punishment from the authorities can guide this towards real physical economic results.
I don’t mind if anyone attacks my post. But I hope OZ corrects his article.
Hmmm… to believe Dutch Public Prosecutors and FIOD, or Ponzi scammers?
PlanB4You is a Ponzi scheme, that’s all that’s relevant here. There is no “business”, it’s all just one great big fraud.
From the sounds of it there was regulatory action taken in August. One would imagine the recent events were a follow-up – hence the media coverage.
By all means feel free to provide a credible source backing up the rest of your claims. Note that “but our Ponzi leader said so” is not a credible source.
And this is why you don’t believe Ponzi scammers over regulators. Thanks for the clarification.
You’re just being pedantic. The RAIDS OF ACTUAL OFFICES and BANK ACCOUNT FREEZE happened on the 18th. There’s no denying that.
From what I understand of Dutch law, he’s entitled to open NEW accounts and keep operating, but all PRIOR assets are frozen.
So you joined for the promises, not the profit?
Reading between the lines, this is what prompted the “hay guys, invest your money with me but lolz you can’t withdraw it for a year” offer on the 18th.
Unless you’re a desperado HYIP ponzi player, it might as well be.
How many shades of stupid have to exist before someone would invest money with a company subject to the level of scrutiny and public naming by regulators PlanB4You is undergoing ???
August 26 was the date of an “international action” against PlanB4you, freezing accounts and seizing assets.
December 18 was the date of a press release from 2 different agencies, based on a court order?
Blocking of assets / seizing of property has now been confirmed by a court, if I have interpreted it correctly.
Johny Schabreg, September 2014:
That was rather clumsy? He first attracted attention from tax authorities, and that led to money laundering investigation and a partial shutdown. 🙂
My previous post was based on a Google translated Dutch source “Emerce Venture” (emerce.nl)
The translated source I used:
Original source (Dutch):
I haven’t verified that source, e.g. by checking more official sources.
I found similar information about an action in August 2014, in a Belgian newspaper “De Standard” and in a Dutch newspaper “nieuws.nl”.
My guess is that the assets freeze etc. was about a “precautionary injunction”, similar to the shutdown of TelexFree in Brazil in June 2013. It means the case is still under investigation.
Most of the sources I checked saw the court decision as a shutdown of a Ponzi / pyramid hybrid. The action in August was mentioned as a type of “additional information” or “background story”.
COLLAPSE BY ITSELF?
Press releases like the ones from FIOD and the Tax Authority should normally lead to a rather immediate collapse in the scheme’s payment system. Keywords like “money laundering” and “tax fraud” may not be enough for an immediate shutdown by authorities, but they should be enough to scare the shit out of payment processors.
Johny Schabreg knew about the court decision on December 11:
He’s trying to “minimize the problem” by first admitting it, and then explaining “cases like that can take YEARS”. “The money hasn’t been lost, it’s only temporarily unavailable”. 🙂
The MMG forum has this version:
On the website of the Dutch Tax Agency (dated December 18) they mention their investigation together with the Public Prosecutors.
They ask people who are, or have been involved with PlanB4You to contact them, a special investigation team will start early January with hearings.
They end their statement with:
When people say that PlanB4You isn’t “Shut Down” they are right, but it will be, soon, so why would a logical thinking person start/continue to build such a “business”?
I don’t understand why people do so in the first place but that’s a different story.
Toko Johny (Johny Schabregs) published the news himself on December 11. The court hearing was on December 5.
He first addresses the problem, and then he spend most of the time “minimizing” it:
“Be the first one to inform people about bad news” can be a good strategy. “Get all the skeletons out of the closet at the same time” can be a part of the same strategy.
People will often do the opposite = pretend bad news don’t exist / try to silence questions about it / try to silence critics. They will end up in a corner when details about it starts to pop up all around them.
He even managed to throw in the “If it had been illegal …” argument.
Then he has “some of the funds will be unavailable for a long time”, “it will not endanger the business”, “a number of projects will be delayed”. “We have not lost the money, we will only need to wait for a final judgment”.
He’s actually quite skilled in how to use “damage control” methods.
He has already “disarmed” most of the uses for the August 26 raid, the December 5 ruling and the December 18 press release.
I would have pointed out that he’s too focused on the existing members. He has failed to see how other people may see it, e.g. the people running payment processors. PlanB4you have suddenly become Ultra High Risk for chargebacks, assets freeze and law suits.
As a response to the post telling us how PlanB is legal because they are launching all these separate businesses:
The pharmabusiness they supposedly have is not their business at all. They just relabel existing products from a failed MLM scheme / web shop.
lebionaturel.com/news/sommeil/s-someil you can find all pharma products from the PlanB4you webshop there (at the same prices).
The company that supplies them is a Belgian company called Le Bio Naturel. Which is not a “laboratory” at all, the registry address is just a house. Here is the MLM scheme page lebionaturel.fr/marketing.htm?id=541 (the scheme itself seems now defunct).
The stuff PlanB sells in the webshop is apparently the old packaging, so they are probably selling off the old stock with new labels. This is very probably the case with ALL so called planB companies. Just an existing product with an ugly DIY sticker on it.
The Mobile App is just this call-tiger.com/nl/ so again not their business. The energy business is just selling clients to existing operators.
Only the TokoJohny chain seems to be real, but that has failed to meet it’s opening deadline time and time again. And again it’s not likely to be a viable business because
a) Johny has already failed managing a single restaurant (he went bankrupt), what makes anyone think he could manage a chain
b) they are starting a franchise system right off the bat. Who buys in to that? There is not a single restaurant open to prove the concept.
Apart from this, there’s a cleaning product, an energy drink, a beauty product. But again, these are very likely to be existing products with an unprofessional PlanB sticker on them.
They are not found in ANY shops but their own webshop. None of these products or businesses could possibly generate the kind of revenue PlanB has to turn over to pay out everyone.