Fake/Meme Facebook Page, Celebration Bots, is a registered member-managed limited liability company in Wyoming and it has announced its consideration to take legal action over a recently failed attempt to unmask their identities. The act was done by a mysterious investigator that is alleged to have ties to the controversial Celebration Box entrepreneur, Iyia Liu. Members are currently working with the New Zealand Police and an Auckland law firm in order to finalise an official complaint on behalf of their administrators and moderators, who act as shareholders.
Unlike New Zealand, shareholders and directors for Wyoming corporations are not public. Additionally, designated directors called registered agents are paid to maintain companies for clients, making it impossible to know the company’s true owners, even in the event of a lawsuit.
The team that operates the page and research on behalf of Celebration Bots rely on their corporate registration to remain anonymous to the media, especially within the legal and financial system. They also benefit from a previously undisclosed litigation fund allocated to member shareholders, which was created shortly after their corporate formation in December 2018.
According to the page’s spokesperson, a private investigator claiming to represent the entrepreneur acted as a dodgy importer/exporter and baited a moderator to pay for a video containing “sensitive business practices and illegal behavior.” As proof, the investigator under the name, “Mark Jones” (or mjbitcoins/markjonesbitcoin), posted a photo of a nearly 3-minute long video containing Liu’s customised Louis Vuitton bag that dons the letters “I.L”. Jones also told the moderator to guess what was in the bag, to which the moderator guessed “cocaine” and Jones replied “no comment”.
The page moderator then continued to converse with “Mark Jones” through the secure messaging app, Wickr to converse privately and exchange money for the damaging video.
After the financial exchange, Jones asked to meet, stating their location in Westgate and pushing for the moderator to give up their address to where they can send a USB of the video. The moderator refused, asking Jones to send the video online.
The next day, a new Wickr account appeared, sending a series of texts to the member stating, “prepare to be exposed”. Sometime later, Mark Jones then revealed themselves as an investigator, citing the need “to know who she is close too [sic] and who she cannot trust” and that the moderator’s name was known to them. The investigator later went on to state that they needed a subpoena (they actually meant court order) for an undisclosed company to reveal the mods name, and would be able to do so by Friday.
In exchange for continued anonymity, the investigator requested a screenshot of the “envious females” involved in talking about Iyia through the page. The investigator then offered for the moderator to meet with “us and Iyia” to sort things out.
The page’s spokesperson admitted that they had paid the investigator $500 worth of bitcoin to purchase information meant to expose unlawful business practices and behaviours by Ms Liu. Expressing the need for “inspirational public figures to not act or do business illegally.” The spokesperson also stated that any details about moderators the investigator claimed to have was non-existent, just like the fictitious video that they sold.
Celebration Bots members have also expressed doubt that the person they interacted with was truly an Investigator, citing the lack of common operational practices/procedures that were witnessed. This suspicion remained due to the investigator revealing themselves online in such a short timespan rather than in person.
After the investigator was refused information on the admins of the celebration bots page, the member was called several times through Wickr and sent a number of messages from additional accounts, with one named “maxkeyg”.
Celebration Bots declined to comment on how many shareholders they have, citing privacy reasons.
This isn’t the first time the page has threatened legal action before. The page was responsible for sending a series of cease & desist letters to Iyia Liu after Liu accused them of several acts, including sending false information to the media and creating fake accounts to frame her for bullying.
The page’s legal representative stressed the importance of understanding how this mystery investigator connects to Ms Liu and her employees. Claiming that this latest investigator drama was “just the latest attempt to stress, flush out, and shame Iyia’s close and personal detractors. They weren’t interested in exposing anyone they don’t know or work with.”
Shareholders of Celebration Bots will vote on the decision to pursue legal action this Thursday.
Ms Liu recently came under fire this Sunday after the New Zealand Herald revealed (seemingly prematurely) her feature in the OnDemand show BossBabes. It is unclear if this latest debacle is a part of the series, but Celebration Bots deny any ties to TVNZ and strongly condemn the network for using Iyia Liu in their OnDemand series. Bots members believe that this investigator troll attack was likely retaliation for helping to reveal the show too early.
“If they want our faces for their little TV show or whatever, they’re going to have to pay off our existing agreements… we aren’t cheap!”
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