Neal Lyons, according to public court documents, has been sued for illegally canceling and reselling over 30 franchises. He typically let's a franchise operate for a year, until they are drained of cash, then cancels them. He moves to immediately resell the franchise without even telling the new buyer about the prior cancellation. This would be a violation of franchise law if he actually registered his franchise.
He then engages in wholesale intimidation with a lawyer who should have been disbarred, before turning the claim over to his insurer. The policy is so small that he really shouldn't bother, there isn't enough coverage to pay a penny on the dollar. Lyons has hid his personal assets in the name of his handicapped daughter, a truly despicable act from a despicable man.
Lyons shouldn't be expected to do any differently. He lies about everything. His education (no college, no MBA), athletic achievements (no football), jobs (no Vans), flying (no jet), business (none, he is a thief, liar, etc.).
If Lyons ever appears in your life you should run. I would hold on to your wallet, he'll grab that if he can. Watch out for Scott Crowell and Stuart Larimer. Two smiling thieves, of the same ilk as Lyons. I wouldn't believe Wolivar. When you sue Lyons, he won't say a word to help you. He's as guilty as Lyons.
I'm no fan of Neal Lyons but he did work for Vans, Inc. He was the President of the Retail Division and during his time there, he stated that he was enrolled in a Harvard MBA program (not a regular program where he attended classes there on a daily basis...more like an online class for execs where he went there a couple of times per year to meet with his group...at least that is what he told everyone. I'm fairly certain it was true). He said that he attended the University of Nebraska and played on the Football team. I don't think anyone ever believed him about the football thing. I'm not the only one who worked with him who would characterize his as "the most insecure egomaniac" they had ever met. I heard that Kim Slovak (mentioned below) sued him for not paying money that he owed her....I assume it was wages. She was his executive assistant at Vans, by the way. Also, to my knowledge Vans did not have a corporate jet. He may have used one belonging to Gary Schoendeld's who was Chairman of the Board and CEO or his father, Walter.
Jim Norman’s Statement Dated March 21, 2006 STATE OF CALIFORNIA COUNTY OF ORANGE Declaration of James L. Norman, Jr. I, James L. Norman, Jr., being duly sworn, deposes and says: 1. I am a retired FBI agent who spent 35 years with the Bureau. Since my retirement, I have continued to serve the FBI as a contract instructor in the field of terrorism. I make this declaration based upon my personal knowledge and in support of plaintiffs. 2. I met Rick Hahn at the FBI working on the Oklahoma City Bombing investigation. I may have met Mr. Hahn prior to the Oklahoma City Bombing at some type of FBI training, but I have no specific recollection of meeting him before the bombing. He was a Supervisory Special Agent assigned to the FBI Resident Agency, Long Beach, California, where Mr. Hahn served as my supervisory agent. 3. I met [REDACTED] Wolivar Wanker around 2000. He is a neighbor who resides on the same block as I do in California. He appears to successfully run his own investigative firm known as Wolivar & Associates. 4. In 2001 or early 2002, Mr. Wolivar began telling me about a friend of his named Neal Lyons that he really liked. Mr. Wolivar advised me that Mr. Lyons was the CEO or CFO of Van’s and that Mr. Lyons had an MBA from Harvard University. In addition, Mr. Wolivar, who appeared to be very impressed with Mr. Lyons, told me that Van’s let Mr. Lyons and his family use their corporate jet whenever he wanted to take his family anywhere as one of his perks for working there. On two occasions my wife and I joined Mr. Wolivar, Mr. Lyons and their wives for dinner at restaurants. During the dinners we engaged in small talk and the subject of Mr. Lyons background was never discussed. Some time later, Mr. Wolivar informed me that Mr. Lyons offered to help him by creating a business plan for Mr. Wolivar’s business. Mr. Wolivar appeared to be very happy about Mr. Lyons’ offer and commented that it would be great to have someone with an MBA from Harvard prepare a business plan for him. A few weeks later, Mr. Wolivar mentioned that Mr. Lyons wanted to charge him a lot of money to prepare the business plan and he was not going to do it. 5. In the fall of 2002 Mr. Wolivar informed me that he and Mr. Lyons were going to go in business together and that they wanted me to be on the Board of Directors for their new company. Shortly thereafter, I attended a lunch with Mr. Lyons, at which time he inquired if I would be interested in becoming a member of the Board of Directors for the company that he and Wolivar were incorporating in the name of Lyons & Wolivar. Mr. Lyons told me that he would do anything he could to convince me to be a member of the Board of Directors and that he had already purchased a photograph of me escorting Timothy McVeigh out of the Noble County Courthouse, Perry, Oklahoma on 4/21/95 to use for advertising purposes. Neal Lyons and REDACTED Wolivar informed me that they intended to sell franchises to purchasers that were to be modeled after Mr. Wolivar’s company and attempt to create standardized investigation and reporting formats for investigators working for insurance companies. This was a decision that they reached before inviting me to join their company and they did not provide much in the way of detailed information. 6. At some point prior to me agreeing to join the board, I was given an agreement that Mr. Lyons wanted me to sign that called for me to become a Contract Instructor for the company. I did not have an interest in being an instructor for Lyons & Wolivar. I mentioned this to Mr. Wolivar and told him I did not want to be an instructor. Mr. Wolivar said he would discuss it with Mr. Lyons. When I voiced my concerns about the wording of the agreement to Mr. Wolivar he told me that they would not be “nit-picking.” Never the less I wanted the wording of the agreement changed. I didn’t hear back from Mr. Lyons or Mr. Wolivar. On 10/15/02, I expressed my concerns about the agreement in an e-mail to Kim Slovak and had the language indicating I was to be an instructor removed from the agreement. It was made very clear to Mr. Wolivar and Mr. Lyons that I was not interested in providing training and would not do it. I explained that my expertise is in counter-terrorism and would not be that useful for conducting insurance investigations. After I sent the e-mail to Ms. Slovak, I spoke with Mr. Lyons on the telephone and eventually agreed to sit on the Board of Directors, provided that L&W obtain errors and omissions insurance for members of the Board of Directors and allow me to have significant input into the company. 7. In October of 2002, Neal Lyons informed me that he had obtained a $5,000,000 errors and omissions insurance for the board members. Relying on this representation and others, I agreed to sit on the board of Lyons & Wolivar in exchange for 150 shares of stock. He also told me that the first meeting of the Board of Directors would be held in the last quarter of 2002. I subsequently received a letter from Mr. Lyons dated 12/29/02, which included a document titled “Action of Shareholders of Lyons and Wolivar, Inc.” dated 10/1/02. This enclosed document was signed by Neal Lyons and [REDACTED] Wolivar. It specifically stated that the Board of Directors would meet quarterly. In the agreement that I signed, I agreed to meet with potential franchisees, to be available to consult or answer questions for franchisees on cases and to give on-going support on cases for franchisees. I did not agree to provide any instruction to franchisees and I was never asked to provide any input in the company. 8. During the last quarter of 2002, I occasionally called Mr. Wolivar on the telephone to inquire if Lyons & Wolivar had scheduled a meeting of the Board of Directors. Mr. Wolivar always replied that Mr. Lyons had not scheduled any Board meetings. Almost all my interaction with Lyons & Wolivar was through Mr. Wolivar and I relied on him to keep me advised as to what was happening with company. I believed that it would be necessary for Lyons & Wolivar to have an initial meeting of the Board of Directors for it to actually exist. Mr. Wolivar told me that Mr. Lyons wanted to sell Lyons & Wolivar franchises for $100,000 and that the purchasers would receive computer equipment, software and training. I told Mr. Wolivar that I thought it would be more reasonable to sell the franchises for the cost of the computer, software and training plus a small profit. 9. On November 27, 2002, I received an e-mail from Mr. Lyons’ secretary, Kim Slovak, in which she informed me that a Joe Chapman was meeting with Mr. Lyons, Mr. Wolivar and a Stuart Larimer to discuss a franchise and that they would like to have me join them for lunch on 12/6/02. I agreed to attend the lunch; however, the morning of 12/6/02 I called Mr. Wolivar to inquire about the lunch and he told me that it had been called off. I was never invited to meet with a potential franchisee again. 10. By the beginning of 2003, Lyons & Wolivar still had not had a board meeting, or at least informed me of doing so. When Mr. Lyons & Mr. Wolivar talked to me about their desire to sell franchises in Lyons & Wolivar, I was of the opinion that the prospective purchasers would be former law enforcement officers or individuals with an investigative background. In my opinion an individual without prior experience and contacts in the business would have a very difficult time getting started. My personal experience causes me to believe that success in this type of business depends to a large extent on an investigator having contacts with individuals who are able to refer cases to them. I have been working as a Private Investigator for over five years and there are still occasional periods of time when I don’t have investigative work. In addition, I thought that the individuals who would be purchasing the franchises would already be licensed investigators in their respective locations or at least qualified to apply for a license. I recall that during a conversation I had with Neal Lyons around the time I agreed to join the Board of Directors; he informed me that due to his previous position at Van’s, he had a number of friends who were executives with National Insurance Companies. I took this statement to mean that they would be ready to do business with him and the franchisees, but I do not specifically recall him making that claim. During the period of time that I had in my possession the 150 shares of Lyons & Wolivar stock that I received in exchange for agreeing to join the Board of Directors, I was never aware of any National Accounts or any business operations by Lyons & Wolivar. I have no personal knowledge of Lyons & Wolivar or the franchisees conducting any investigations, unless Mr. Wolivar’s company was involved in this portion of the Lyons & Wolivar business. At one time Mr. Wolivar’s company and Lyons & Wolivar shared office space, but I didn’t know the nature of the relationship between Lyons & Wolivar and Mr. Wolivar’s own company. My only input to the business at Lyons & Wolivar was to suggest to Wolivar that they should sell the franchises for something close to the actual setup cost and then make their profit from the profits made by the franchisees. 11. During the first quarter of 2003, I attempted to find out what was going on with the company and when there would be a meeting of the Board of Directors by placing telephone calls to REDACTED Wolivar. Mr. Wolivar told me that the company franchises were not selling and no board meeting had been scheduled. It should be noted that my only contact with anyone at Lyons & Wolivar during the period November 2002 to April 1. 2003 was with Mr. Wolivar and he was my only source of information regarding the company. Based on Mr. Wolivar’s comments that Lyons & Wolivar was not selling any franchises, that they had never called a meeting of the Board of Directors, and that after November 2002 I was never again asked to meet with any potential franchisees, I believed that Lyons & Wolivar was a company with no business and would soon go out of business. I recall Mr. Wolivar telling me during one of my telephone calls that Mr. Lyons was not paying him what was owed for Lyons & Wolivar’s portion of Mr. Wolivar’s office space rent and the use of Mr. Wolivar’s personnel. 12. On April 1, 2003, Mr. Wolivar contacted me while I was in Las Vegas on business. I was surprised when Mr. Wolivar informed me that Neal Lyons had sold one or two franchises. I was also surprised when Mr. Wolivar informed me that a week earlier he resigned from the Lyons & Wolivar Board of Directors. He stated that he resigned because Mr. Lyons appeared to be excluding him from the meetings with prospective franchise purchasers and he had a concern about what Mr. Lyons might say to the franchisees when he was not present. I was more surprised that Mr. Wolivar waited a week after his resignation before calling me since he was the person who had convinced me and Rick Hahn to become involved with the company and he was my only source of information regarding Lyons & Wolivar. During this telephone call, Mr. Wolivar informed me that he didn’t believe that Mr. Lyons had purchased the insurance for the Board of Directors. Mr. Wolivar also informed me that Mr. Lyons recently mailed a letter to the members of the Board of Directors asking for a vote to change the Board of Directors to an advisory board so he could reduce his insurance costs. At this point, there had never been a Board Meeting and it was clear to me that I was not going to have any input into the company. After receiving the telephone call from Mr. Wolivar, I telephonically contacted Rick Hahn and told him about the call from Mr. Wolivar. I told Mr. Hahn that I would call Mr. Lyons and ask him about the insurance. 13. On 4/2/02, I telephonically contacted Mr. Lyons and told him that I had reason to believe that he had not purchased insurance for the Board of Directors. During this telephone call, Lyons told me that he had purchased insurance from Lloyds of London for the Board of Directors in the amount of $1,000,000 for each director prior to the creation of the Board of Directors. He said the policy included additional coverage for legal representation for the board members in the event of litigation. He stated that he understood when we talked about me joining the Board of Directors that I would not serve on the Board without this insurance and that he would never put himself in the position of not having the insurance for himself or the other board members. During this telephone call, Mr. Lyons assured me that he would write a letter to me and Rick Hahn setting forth all the information regarding the Board of Directors; insurance policy, including the dates of coverage, amounts of insurance and all other pertinent information. He told me that letter would be mailed to us on 4/2/03. During this telephone call Mr. Lyons said he wanted to change the Board of Directors to an advisory board so that he could save money on the insurance. He even stated that he wanted to save the money because he had been spending too much money on the Board of Director’s insurance policy. Following this telephone call to Mr. Lyons, I called Mr. Wolivar and told him that I had just spoken with Mr. Lyons and that Mr. Lyons told me that he did purchase the insurance for the board members. Mr. Wolivar said, “I can assure you,” that Mr. Lyons did not purchase the insurance. At that point I was very concerned about my involvement with Lyons & Wolivar. I felt that I just could not do business with someone who would directly tell me a lie about something that was as important as insurance and appeared to be excluding me completely from the business. 14. After my conversation with Neal Lyons, I contacted Rick Hahn in order to discuss our options. We both believed it was best that we terminate all involvement with Lyons & Wolivar. This decision was based on Neal Lyons’ apparent lie about purchasing insurance for the Board of Directors and Mr. Lyons’ failure to include us in any business discussions. We decided to wait a few days to see if Mr. Lyons would send us the letter about the insurance because we wanted Mr. Lyons’ comments in writing. However, Mr. Lyons did not send us any material regarding the insurance for the board. 15. On April 9, 2003, Mr. Hahn and I met with Mr. Lyons in his office at Lyons & Wolivar. At that time I asked Mr. Lyons to show us the insurance policy for the Board of Directors and Mr. Lyons stated that he never told me that he had purchased insurance for the Board of Directors. This clearly indicated to me that Mr. Lyons had lied earlier when he told me that he purchased the insurance and gave me details about the coverage. Before meeting with Mr. Lyons, Mr. Hahn and I had already decided that we did not want our names and reputations associated with a company that would exclude us and we had decided to withdraw from the company. 16. At this point we informed Mr. Lyons of our desire to withdraw from all involvement with Lyons & Wolivar. We both issued a statement of facts detailing our concerns. Although our original agreements with Lyons & Wolivar indicated that we could keep our stock if we chose to leave the company, Mr. Hahn and I did not want to keep our stock or have any further connection with the company. We both issued a statement of facts detailing our concerns. At that time, Neal Lyons issued us receipts for our returned stock and we executed papers concerning termination of our agreements. (See attached exhibits). Specifically, Mr. Hahn and I presented Mr. Lyons with notification that Lyons & Wolivar no longer had our consent to use our names or images in conjunction with their business, that printed materials bearing our names and images could be used “…until such time as they are exhausted or expired, but not to exceed a period of ninety (90) days from the date of the letter (April 9, 2003)”; that all changeable media such as the website “…should be altered to delete our names and/or images within five (5) business days.”; and that “prospective clients should be informed that we are no longer affiliated with Lyons & Wolivar.” The same date I received a separate letter from Mr. Lyons acknowledging termination of the Independent Contractor Agreement between myself and Lyons & Wolivar and that I would no longer have any relationship with Lyons & Wolivar. A few days later in the mail I received a second letter from Mr. Lyons in which he acknowledged my “resignation” from the Board of Directors. In the same letter he advised that Lyons & Wolivar would hold me harmless for any legal or civil action “…you would be named in from your term as a board member…” As stated in the documents that we gave to Mr. Lyons on 4/9/2003, we believed at the time and continue to believe that Mr. Lyons never impaneled a Board of Directors because according to REDACTED Wolivar, Mr. Lyons never called a meeting of the board and Rick Hahn and I were never notified of a board meeting or invited to attend a board meeting. This last letter also thanked me for my “contributions while part of our team” despite the fact that I made no contributions and never participated in any activity dealing with the development of the company, business model for the company, met with prospective franchisees or even spoke with any prospective franchisees. 17. I do not have any personal knowledge that Lyons & Wolivar has continued to use my name in their advertising or claim that I am in anyway involved with that company. Some time after Neal Lyons moved Lyons & Wolivar into their own office space; I was contacted by REDACTED Wolivar who informed me that he had been walking past the new conference room in the office space occupied by Lyons & Wolivar and through the windows observed what appeared to be pictures of me on their wall. I do not recall when this occurred, but I believe that it was not too long after they separated their offices. At Mr. Wolivar’s request I drove over to the building housing the offices of Lyons & Wolivar and met Mr. Wolivar in the parking lot. He pointed out the Lyons & Wolivar conference room on the first floor of the building and the blinds were open. In looking through the window I observed one or two photographs on the wall that appeared to be the photos of me walking Timothy McVeigh out of the Noble County Jail in April 1995. I attempted to take photographs of the pictures on the wall using a small camera but the photos did not turn out. At the time I specifically asked Mr. Wolivar if he had any knowledge that Mr. Lyons or anyone else at Lyons & Wolivar was claiming that I was in any way involved with Lyons & Wolivar. He stated that he did not. Later that evening I went to the Lyons & Wolivar website and looked to see if Lyons & Wolivar had Rick Hahn or I mentioned in any way. The site did not have any information regarding Mr. Hahn or myself. Based on the fact that in October 2002, Mr. Lyons told me that he had purchased the photograph in question, the fact that I only observed what appeared to be small photographs on the conference room wall, the fact that Mr. Wolivar did not have any information indicating that anyone at Lyons & Wolivar was continuing to claim that Rick Hahn and/or I were still involved in the company and finally the fact that neither Mr. Hahn or I was mentioned on the Lyons & Wolivar website I did not pursue the matter. 18. If Neal Lyons has continued to use mine and/or Rick Hahn’s names to further promote and sell Lyons & Wolivar franchises following our withdrawal from Lyons & Wolivar on 4/9/2003, I consider this a breach of the termination of ownership agreement that I signed with Mr. Lyons. 19. If Neal Lyons has been listing mine and/or Rick Hahn’s names, verbally and in print, as trainers and as team members for franchise purchasers, this would be false. Mr. Lyons knew that I would not be an instructor or provide instruction for Lyons & Wolivar. 20. To the extent that any advertisement or oral representation since April 9, 2003 suggests that I am involved with Lyons & Wolivar or that I am part of the Lyons & Wolivar team, it is false. Mr. Lyons knows that fact. As unambiguously stated in our termination agreement, I have had no involvement with Lyons & Wolivar since that date.
I have worked with L&W for years.Neal Lyons is straight up and honest.These statements are childesh and are hear say.It has no factual representation just what they where told.
I’d like to post the following “Executive Profile” page where I’m quoting from an L&W advertising brochure. I still have an original brochure for evidence. There are pictures and profiles of Neal Lyons, REDACTED Wolivar, Richard S. “Rick” Hahn, Jim Norman, and Mark W. Green. I never met Green and don’t know who he is, so I won’t list all his accolades. Neal Lyons Lyons gets top billing. His title is Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board. His profile reads as follows: In August 2002, Neal Lyons and REDACTED Wolivar formed Lyons & Wolivar. Previously, Mr. Lyons served as CEO for VEXCORP, a state-of-the-art communications company specializing in worldwide videoconferencing. Earlier, during his 25 years in retailing, Mr. Lyons worked with Reebok International, Intershoe Corporation, Kinney Shoe Corporation and most recently, Vans, Inc. At Vans, he quadrupled the size of the athletic shoe manufacturer’s retail division to encompass several hundred stores and launched 12 skateparks. He was also instrumental in presentations to Wall Street and investment houses. An expert in corporate development and finance, Mr. Lyons has successfully implemented corporate acquisitions and mergers. He is a member of Harvard Business School and active in numerous community programs. In addition, he serves on the Board of Directors for Special Olympics and for Surfparks LLC. REDACTED Wolivar A licensed Private Investigator since 1990, REDACTED Wolivar has conducted more that 5,200 surveillances in all parts of the United States. He has owned and operated Wolivar & Associates, Inc. for over a decade. During that time, he established a reputation for putting together teams of top quality surveillance and undercover investigators. Mr. Wolivar has served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps, on the staff of U.S. Senator Bob Dole, and with government agencies including the Federal Bureau of Investigation. In addition to his duties at Lyons & Wolivar, he continues to serve as President and Chairman of Wolivar & Associates. Rick Hahn Rick Hahn became a licensed Private Investigator in California after a distinguished FBI career that spanned 32 years. He retired from the Bureau in 1999 from the post of Senior Supervisory Agent for the Long Beach, California office. Notably, Mr. Hahn served as a forensic investigator for Pan Am Flight 103 and the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. In 1995, he was called upon to oversee the processing of the crime scene at the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. Since 9/11, he has made numerous appearances on radio and television as a law enforcement and terrorism expert on such programs as Live with Geraldo Rivera, NBC News, Dateline, Hardball, and MSNBC News. Jim Norman Now a licensed Private Investigator, Jim Norman was an FBI Special Agent for over 30 years. Even after his retirement in 1999, he continues to serve the Bureau as a speaker to law enforcement groups. Mr. Norman has an exceptional level of expertise in investigative techniques, encompassing virtually every type of criminal activity within the FBI’s jurisdiction. He was also an FBI Bomb Technician/Police Instructor for nearly 20 years. Mr. Norman has represented the FBI at major crime scenes throughout the U.S. Within minutes of the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, he was designated the overall Case Agent. In that capacity, he was involved in the supervision and coordination of the activities of several hundred agents and other personnel. Those were four of the guys promised as L&W board members. Three of them resigned before I even signed my fraudulent contract in 2003. No one ever mentioned this to me until September 2004 when ex-franchisee, Ron Bruns, told me during a telephone call. With that background I’d like to introduce the sworn statements our attorneys eventually obtained from three of the advertised L&W Board members. Since I couldn’t get any law enforcement agencies to open a case no one even questioned these guys to corroborate my charges until our lawyers took the initiative. REDACTED Wolivar’s Statement Dated March 6, 2006 STATE OF CALIFORNIA COUNTY OF ORANGE DECLARATION OF [REDACTED] WOLIVAR I, [REDACTED] WOLIVAR, being duly sworn, depose and say: 1. I am the owner of C5I, an investigative services firm based in Southern California that was formerly known as Wolivar & Associates. I make this declaration based upon my personal knowledge of the facts set forth herein. 2. I have successfully operated C5i 22 for almost seventeen years. The firm started as Wolivar & Associates, which was successful and enjoyed a good reputation in the investigative services community. In 2000 I became interested in expanding Wolivar & Associates into a nationwide investigative services company and began discussing potential opportunities to do so with Neal Lyons, who at that time was an acquaintance that I had known for several years. Neal had just lost his job at Van’s, a shoe retailer, and was looking for new business opportunities. 3. We formed a corporation called Lyons & Wolivar (L&W) to create a national investigative services company. The initial idea of this venture was for me to provide the investigative services expertise and Lyons would arrange the financing. I envisioned the business as having regional offices. It was not my original intention for Lyons to arrange the financing through franchising of the business. 4. Neal began to franchise the operations in September 2002 to provide financing for the venture. Originally, I focused on creating investigative operations for the business and let Lyons handle the franchise sales operations. Once I began to learn what Lyons was doing to sell the franchises, I became deeply disturbed. It appeared to me that Lyons was only using my company and my name to give him credibility for selling franchises, and that he had little interest in establishing a credible investigative operations or providing credible guidance for the franchisees. Moreover, it appeared to me that Lyons and others associated with the franchising operations of L&W (Stuart Larimer and Scott Crowell), were targeting individuals who lacked knowledge of the investigative services industry for potential franchisees. I think it was Lyons who quoted Barnum and Bailey, “there’s a sucker born every minute” in referring to the franchisees. Lyons and others were basically telling potential franchisees misleading information in order to sell a franchise. Lyons’ sales tactics ranged from gross exaggeration to outright deception (described in more detail below). I and others at the office became increasingly uncomfortable with the actions of Lyons, Larimer and Crowell. Employees at Wolivar & Associates began to express concerns that L&W may becoming a “ponzi scheme.” 5. Lyons had me participate in a franchise sales pitch to Debbie West. After I heard the things that were being said, I began to question working with Lyons. I openly confronted him about his activities, which resulted in an irreparable rift between myself and Lyons and he eventually stopped inviting me into the franchise sales sessions. Lyons threatened me with litigation if I disclosed certain information about L&W. One of Lyons’ expressions was “intimidate and litigate,” which I understood to refer to his course of action regarding franchisees. 6. In March, 2003 I resigned from management of the company and slowly tried to distance myself from Lyons & Wolivar, though I did not completely sever the ties. I eventually hired a lawyer to get Lyons to remove my name from the business. Despite several requests to stop using my name, he continues to use my name and attempts to give the appearance that I am still involved with L&W. See Tab A. Although I spent years developing the reputation and goodwill associated with the Wolivar & Associates name, I was forced to change the name of my company to C5i to avoid being associated with what I considered to be unethical activities with Lyons & Wolivar. See Tab B. 7. During my tenure at L&W, I witnessed several acts of deception used to induce people into purchasing a franchise. These acts can be broken up into three categories: 1. Past business success and national accounts, 2. Training, and 3. Other unethical practices. Past Business Success and National Accounts 8. Lyons’ pitch to sell new franchises starts with telling the prospective franchisee that he will provide a turnkey investigative services company with a proven track record of success. He told the potential franchisees that the franchise package uses the business model of the highly successful Wolivar & Associates. He then distributes a financial pro forma of how the franchise will perform. He also provides PowerPoint presentations and graphs of fictional financial performance supposedly based on Wolivar & Associates. Finally, a central feature of the franchise was that Lyons told them that L&W would have a guaranteed base of “National Accounts” that have committed to doing substantial business with each of the franchisees to sustain the operations of the franchisees when the doors open. 9. Much of Lyons’ sales pitch is false, grossly exaggerated or materially deceptive. For starters, the franchise operation actually given to the franchisee is materially different than the model of Wolivar & Associates. These differences are substantial enough that I would not expect that one could reasonably rely upon the past success of Wolivar & Associates to be indicative of the franchisees’ expected success. Wolivar & Associates has been in business over 15 years, has long established relationships and experienced and seasoned investigators. Furthermore, Wolivar & Associates has experienced professionals with the know how to provide a high quality investigative service. 10. Lyons would repeatedly refer to the success of the L&W and make it seem like there was substantial business being conducted by L&W. He apparently was using Wolivar & Associates track record for L&W. L&W started in 2002, yet he advertised in brochures and website that he had been in business a decade. The truth of the matter was that L&W’s national office had very little in terms of actual investigative operations and was just getting started. Eric Devore, my assistant, and I repeatedly told Lyons that he could not market and franchise in the manner that he was doing without an investigative operations base. Using Wolivarr & Associates credibility was deceptive. Nevertheless, Lyons continued to create the façade that L&W had already established a substantial operations base and a “decade of experience.” 11. The franchise pro forma distributed to each franchisee during sales pitches bears no relationship to Wolivar & Associates past financial success. Nor did the graphs and other charts presented in a power point sales presentation to the franchisees bear any relationship to the financial performance of Wolivar & Associates. I do not know where Lyons came up with the numbers. I confronted Lyons about the inaccuracies of the financial data in these statements and asked Lyons to stop misrepresenting this information. Despite these requests, Lyons continued to represent that the pro formas depicted the past success of Wolivar & Associates and existing franchisees, and that, based upon this historical performance, a franchisee could reasonably expect to achieve these financial results. This was clearly not the case. At least while I was with the company, to the best of my knowledge none of the franchises have made what the pro forma’s have estimated they would. 12. I have personally witnessed Lyons telling a potential franchise owner about a National Account that was allegedly committed to do business with L&W’s local franchisees which simply did not exist. Indeed, there were no National Accounts while I was at Lyons & Wolivar and the notion that there were companies just waiting to do business with the franchisees was patently false. He made it sound like there would be no problem getting substantial work when that turned out not to be the case. I confronted Lyons and told him that what he was telling the franchisee was inaccurate, but he would not stop making these misrepresentations. 13. The events surrounding Debbie West’s franchise purchase is illustrative of the kinds of misrepresentations being made to potential franchisees during my time at L&W. West’s decision to invest in the franchise was significant in my decision to eventually get out of L&W. During the session I became frustrated with the representations which Lyons, Crowell and Larimer were making to West. I recall Larimer specifically telling her that, because of his background working in state fund in California, he would be able to get her work. West was shown a Power Point presentation depicting the growth of Wolivar & Associates in recent years and listing a national account that was not a national account. See Tab D. The figures for the growth of Wolivar & Associates were not accurate and Lyons simply did not respond when I confronted him about it. Furthermore, Lyons had a map containing all of Zenith’s offices all over the country. He told Debbie that Zenith was a National Account of Lyons & Wolivar when Zenith was not even a customer of L&W, much less committed to do business with local franchisees. The truth of the matter was that during the time I was with L&W there was never a national network of guaranteed customers. Lyons knew this, as I confronted him, but he still continued to make these misrepresentations. 14. I also observed the “brainstorming” session among Lyons, Crowell and Larimer before West came into their office for a sales pitch. Apparently, they had recently discovered that Ohio’s Workers’ Compensation investigative services were handled by the state itself. I recall them saying that all state fund investigations were done in house. This means that private investigators could not get this type of work which was a primary source of income for investigative service agencies. Lyons, Crowell and Larimer attempted to generate justifications to give to West as to why her franchise investment would still be worthwhile in view of the difficult climate in the state of Ohio for Workers Comp investigations. They apparently decided to justify the investment by saying that she could get enough work from other carriers, third party administrators, and law firms to perform investigations….(end of statement). Note: There appears to have been more pages, but my copy ended here.