Is #FightBack Foundation a Scam? Has it Gone International?
The involvement of John Pierce of Pierce Bainbridge and mounting odd issues elevate concerns.
- More issues with #Fightback Foundation raising funds in part for the defense of Kyle Rittenhouse.
- Apparent lack of transparency, numbers that do not to add up, conflicting information, disgruntled supporters.
- Perhaps there is a reasonable explanation. Or perhaps John Pierce, who in our view has scammed vendors, scammed litigation funders and scammed cash advance lenders, has moved on to scamming the general public.
The #FightBack Foundation has received heavy scrutiny. Ex-Rudy Giuliani lawyer John Pierce is involved. Pierce has a dodgy past, including issues with substance abuse, massive debt, multiple lawsuits and domestic violence restraining orders against him. Pierce even lost his job at the K&L Gates law firm in 2016 after physically assaulting another employee. (Pierce is the “Respondent” in the sworn statement below from his former spouse.)
While Wendy Rittenhouse’s son’s life is in Pierce’s hands, just last year Pierce’s former spouse said under penalty of perjury his kids did not want to see him. An excerpt from the July 27, 2019 filing is below.
A few individuals who’ve worked with Pierce have suggested they believe he is unstable — one referred to Pierce a “narcissistic sociopath,” another as a “fucking lunatic,” and yet another said Pierce may be “bipolar.”
A seasoned lawyer Robert Barnes has opined that #Fightback is an “open scam.” The video is 60-seconds, it’s worth a listen.
A long-time tweeter expressed similar skepticism.
A third view comes from another lawyer who cut right to the chase.
The $1 Million
Attorney Barnes relied on simple math to say they’ve “blown through one million dollars.” He is working with what’s out there, but is what’s out there legit? (The attorney, of course, realizes this as well.) #Fightback’s failure to meaningfully update donations received for over 30 days, suggests a higher number.
#FightBack Goes International!!!
Pierce says he stepped off the #Fightback board as issues about his “dodgy financial past” surfaced. Yet, he can still receive monies and remains involved in fundraising efforts on Twitter.
The debt-ridden attorney says donation requests are coming in from “around the world.” Pierce, who again, says he stepped away from the Board months ago, personally offered to assist with a $250 donation from Australia.
As for international transactions, a concern has been expressed about “fake addresses.”
Up is Down, Down is Up
There are now at least three different #FightBack webpages related to donations: a main page, a defense fund page, a bail tracker page.
None tracks overalls funds raised, none are a model in clarity, one says donations go to Rittenhouse, but if you click the Rittenhouse tab it takes you to a donation page from another one of the pages, and the a donation page which the other page suggests is for the general fund, not for Rittenhouse fund as suggested on the initial page. In a nutshell, you click on a tab to donate for Rittenhouse and you end up on a page which appears to be donations for the general fund, rather than Kyle.
Yes, we know, it sounds confusing; presumably that’s because it is confusing.
(Update, November 8) We said it was confusing. A Rittenhouse supporter who is pushing hard for information from Pierce and the #FightBack team posted more today. Speaks for itself.
Perhaps this is the result of incompetence, perhaps deliberate confusion or perhaps part of a scam.
Folks with concerns are likely not comforted by individuals related to #FightBack tweeting one thing and #FightBack websites saying another.
This discrepancy is evident with respect to the urgent $1 million bail solicitation. Illustratively…
- Friday, October 30. #FightBack tweets it needs $1 million to bail out Rittenhouse.
- Sunday, November 1. #FightBack tweets it needs $500,000 for the bail. (Tweet is below)
- Sunday November 1. #FightBack now tweets that it needs $600,000 for the bail. (The amount went up $100,000 in two hours.)
However, also on November 1, when either $500,000 or $600,000 was purportedly needed, the website bail tracker tells a different story; it shows an over $978,000 shortfall. (Date on bottom right of screen shot.)
- Sunday November 4. John Pierce tweets “I think we are looking at about” $350,000 for the bail. Pierce’s equivocations — “think” and “about” — are notable. (Pierce’s message was met with with skepticism.)
Here too, the Rittenhouse bail tracker tells a different story than the one being told. The day after Pierce’s $350,000 tweet, on November 5, 2020, the #FightBack bail tracker page represented a $974,000 shortfall. (Date on bottom right of screen shot.)
Unhappy Rittenhouse Supporters
A Rittenhouse donor, who appears to be a strong supporter, exchanged messages with another supporter today. The messages are enlightening.
Later in the day there were still no answers. And a claim apparently arose that John Pierce said “he’s not involved.”
(Update, November 8). Pierce claims he stepped down “upon taking the representation,” that is cute. “As everyone knows,” Pierce stepped down after his personal and professional financial house of horrors was exposed internationally.
Yet stepping down still hasn’t stopped Pierce from shilling for money. Just this morning, the attorney, once again wore a fundraising hat — Pierce’s lack of precision “a couple of few hundred thousand” is also notable.
A Hot Mess
We have included only a sample of oddities surrounding the Foundation; there is more.
Perhaps there is a reasonable explanation. Or perhaps John Pierce, who in our view has scammed litigation funders, scammed vendors and scammed cash advance lenders, has found a new group of marks in the general public.
Whatever the case may be, over $2.1 million has flowed to #FightBack, Kyle Rittenhouse remains in jail, his lawyer John Pierce spends a bunch of time on Twitter, and #Fightback lacks transparency.
Is This a Scam?
Time will tell.