Cohen accused of ID theft

Cohen accused of ID theft

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It is alleged that Sam Cohen of IHRB assumed the identity of an Ashley & Martin client in order to fabricate a complaint to the Health Care Complaints Commission, for no other reason than malice against his competitor — not that Mr Cohen is in the same league as Ashley & Martin. IHRB’s ads reveal deep-seated jealousy of his competitors. More on that topic can be found if you click here. Also, the idea of running an ad campaign that heavily focusses on his competitors, comes from what psychologists call ‘deflection’. From what Mr Cohen told me during the 12 months that I was his client, it seems to me that he points the finger at what he alleges others do badly, as a way of deflecting from what he does badly. It’s like someone saying that they hate tax-cheats, hoping that the listener would assume that they are not a tax cheat (when in fact they are a tax cheat). It’s a game of manipulation.

When I learned of this case of alleged identity theft in late 2011, I decided that I would not publish it. I learn a lot about Sam Cohen that remains buried in my files. However, I felt it necessary to bring this to light after the baseless accusations that Mr Cohen levelled at me during a CTTT Group Hearing on 5 March 2012. I was at CTTT Sydney, providing support to a former IHRB client who was alleging that he had been defrauded of $9,900. The former client has been ill for nine years. He asked me if I would represent him. Mr Cohen objected to my representation. Furthermore, in a letter to the Tribunal, Mr Cohen said that he did not even want me in the Hearing room — which goes against the established principles of open Hearings in Courts and Tribunals.

During the Group Hearing of 5 March 2012, for no reason at all, Mr Cohen decided to complain about me (merely to sling mud, because he has nothing else to put forward) by telling the Presiding Member that I was ‘instigating’ his clients. He said that even this particular case involving Mr Jxxx was brought about as a result of me instigating the complaint — as if to suggest that his clients were minding their own business, happy with the world, and had no complaint against Sam Cohen of IHRB, and that I stirred them to make a complaint about him — a complaint which they would not otherwise have contemplated. This accusation is completely false and unfound, as I shall explain later in this article. For now, let’s listen to what Mr Cohen told the member. Click on the grey arrow below to open the audio player and hear the extract from the Group Hearing room. The audio is transcribed below in green.

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Mr Sam Cohen: And he instigates my customers.

Presiding Member, Ms Sancia De Jersey: Um, sorry what does he do with your customers?

Mr Sam Cohen: He instigates my customers to come and complain about me. He’s done that in the past, where two or three customers have complained too, to the Health Care Complaints Commission.

Presiding Member, Ms Sancia De Jersey: Okay.

Mr Sam Cohen: And so on. And even this gentleman Mr [Jxxx].

THE POT CALLING THE KETTLE BLACK

First of all, I have never instigated any complainant. This type of baseless accusation is typical of how Sam Cohen operates. In any case, the hypocrisy of this kind of accusation is remarkable. All the clients who had complained about him were victims who were upset by the way he mistreated them. Whereas, what he had done by assuming the identity of a client of Ashley & Martin, is typical of Mr Cohen’s disregard for fairness and decency.

One day, a satisfied Ashely & Martin client (let’s call him Bill), made an appointment to see Sam, simply because Bill had seen IHRB’s ads that make outrageous claims. Bill was naturally curious about the many bold claims they made — claims which the Complaints Resolution Panel has Sanctioned, asking IHRB to withdraw them and to publish retractions because the Panel determined that IHRB’s ads have been ‘unlawful, misleading, and verified’. Nonetheless, the wild claims were published in a wide range of publications, claiming that IHRB’s hair regrowth products are the best in the world. It’s no wonder Bill thought to investigate, per chance to discover something new, in view of Sam Cohen’s insistence that he had discovered ‘world leading… state of the art… exclusive secret natural extracts’. Bill figured that he had nothing to lose, and that it makes sense to check-out what’s available on the market.

During the sales meeting, Bill mentioned to Sam that he was a current client of Ashley & Martin. When Bill left Sam Cohen’s office, it is alleged that Sam Cohen lodged a formal complaint with the Health Care Complaints Commission — the very Commission that had thoroughly investigated his illegal practices and issued him, personally, and his company IHRB, with Permanent Prohibition Orders. It is alleged that Sam Cohen fabricated a complaint, using Bill’s identity, in order to lend credence to the fake complaint, to make it look like a real complaint. What was Sam Cohen hoping to achieve? Who knows how his mind ticks! One can only assume that he was tired of being scrutinised by so many Departments (each of whom found him guilty of breaches), that he wanted to deflect attention onto someone else. Maybe he thought that if he were to besmirch the name of his competitors, he might not look so bad, by comparison. Who knows? Anyway, his tactics backfired and no doubt had the opposite effect by further tarnishing his name and reputation with the Health Care Complaints Commission which had already given him a starring role in their Annual Report.

THE BALLY CHEEK

You can see why it was both funny and sad that Sam Cohen would accuse me of ‘instigating’ his clients, when his actions have hypocrisy stamped all over them.

Mr Cohen accused me of going in search of his clients and causing/inciting them to lodge a CTTT complaint; as if to say that I was causing him trouble by sourcing and provoking his clients to complain about him. There is absolutely no basis for this accusation. Mr Cohen makes all sorts of claims that are unfounded. He cannot point to a single case where I had ‘instigated’ the complaint. In each case, either the Applicant had already lodged the CTTT form and had a Hearing-date set, long before I had communicated with them, or the Applicant had made contact with me first. The Applicants had sought me out because they were aggrieved and were in search of justice. This is also true in relation to the current Applicant, Mr Jxxx. He contacted me first. His email to me was thus (typos and errors retained):

‘hi, how are you, im currently on sams mediciation which i have stoped today after discovering this website, ive been paying alot for a few years now, and even when i told him if their was any side effects to his mediciation, he denied all of them, whats my next step, please help, my story goes beyond this, thanks’

During the Group Hearing, after Mr Cohen accused me of ‘instigating’ the complaints against him, I pointed to a man in our Hearing Room whose name is Mr Txxx. He was wearing a cap because he was embarrassed due to being completely bald. I told Tribunal Member Ms De Jersey that the man in the cap was a stranger to me. He had attended as an observer because he also wishes to make a claim against IHRB. I had not instigated Mr Txxx. He had written to me, saying:

‘I spent about $ 10K over 3 years with no benefits. I need to discuss with you and need your help to sue this cheater and recover my money.’

Another former Applicant (Jack) had contacted me saying:

‘I Happened to find your website and was quite upset about alot of what I read. There is so much to read I couldnt get thru most of it. I have been on Ihrb’s treatement for about 9 months now and I am very concerned about the side effects. im not sure about how much hair actually grew but I think there is very little. What I am mostly upset is that if I could have gotten the same results for the price of minoxidl alone. I spent $4000. Is there a way I can get my money back. Thanks so much for being a champion for the people if only there were more people like you in the world we would have less scammers and less victims. Thanks’

I have a long list of similar emails from concerned IHRB victims who speak of being ‘scammed’ and ‘conned’, asking for information about IHRB. Many of them do not pursue Mr Cohen, out of fear or embarrassment.

In speaking with Member De Jersey, Mr Cohen also made reference to the Complainants who made official statements to the Health Care Complaints Commission which served IHRB with Permanent Prohibition Orders. Mr Cohen was telling Ms De Jersey that I had sought-out the Complainants. The HCCC Complainants included:

A) Mr [50] who, long before I had made any contact with him, had engaged a prominent law firm to sue Mr Cohen for medical malpractice that nearly killed Mr [50]. Mr [50] had written to the Commissioner of NSW Fair Trading, long before I had any contact with him.

B) Mr [79] who had written to me saying:

‘…i had to return the bottles to Sam as the Minoxidil started to burn my scalp and at one stage i had to go to Sydney hospital next to where i work… and i had the doctors checking me… I want you to know that im happy to help in any way if i can to bring IHRB and Sam cohen to justice…’

Under no influence from me, Mr [79] decided to visit Mr Cohen and record the conversation using his camera phone. The footage shows that Mr Cohen had sold dangerous non-approved medications to Mr [79], without a doctor’s prescription (and even with a prescription, the sale would have been illegal). When HCCC Commissioner asked Mr Cohen about this transaction, for which the Commissioner had the medications and the credit-card receipt as proof, Mr Cohen lied to the Commissioner, saying that he never sold such products to Mr [79], and Mr Cohen accused Mr [79] of stealing the medications from his office. (Despite video evidence to the contrary!)

C) Philip had already commenced action against Mr Cohen long before I had made contact with him.

D) Other general complainants included Ron and Jack. They both contacted me — not the other way around.

This is a long story, and involves many victims. None were ‘instigated’ by me. I bring this up here to illustrate how Mr Cohen accuses me of somehow waging some vendetta, when each of my statements about him are accurate and supported by evidence, whereas each of his accusations have no foundation and no proof, and are false and misleading.

Indeed, people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

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