Don't you wonder where people REALLY get their money? (I DO!) Because there seems to be a hell of a lot sloshing around. To this day, some money comes from work, marriage, inheritance and/or investments. Lately it seems to be credit (good, bad or lose your house Uggly) and the reliable-as-long-as-you-don't-get-caught scamming.
I'm not saying every blogger is into scamming, okay. Just some. Okay, maybe ONE.
IN THE BEGINNING....
Knowing what you know now about The Boy's living conditions (and by no means do I look down on him for this), let me take you back several years (circa 2003-2008?) before Dolce and Marc came calling.
He set up an online travel agency which has since been de-listed by IATA. At around this time he did single trips to New York (where he stayed with a criminally not sexually handcuffed Marc Jacobs staffer), China (Great Wall), France (LV, Eiffel), Russia, wherever!
(Not very much travel in my opinion. I know people who travel long haul and/or 6-8 hour trips every other week)
He could have done this with his travel agency or he could have done this at the expense of clients of his then-agency. (There was a time when online and phone sales at Saks and Amazon were flagged because customer cards were compromised. It happens to the best of us)
According to www.snopes.com/crime/warnings/creditcard.asp, credit fraud is very easy to do. All you need is a phone (to harrass people with) and a computer with internet connection (the better to 'harvest' emails and credit and identity info with, my dear..). I can't tell you more but you can go on snopes.com then give me the one-page executive summary.
And everyone knows hackers are based in third world countries in Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe but cards scammed are from developed countries where credit lines are larger.
A style spy said that after the taping of Philippine Project Runway, he invited a designer and two models to an upmarket local restaurant and proceeded to order several bottles of wine which the Philippine production company was not prepared to pay for since they ain't NBC. The Boy stuck them with a bill of close to USD 1,000 which was a fierce bill to swallow even for the wealthy and especially bitter if you were planing on buying fierce Givenchy heels. It must have been a slow day for credit scamming.
The network sent him marching in Crocs after that.
When he was a little known blogger, he flew three members of the Philippine media to HK in exchange for a spread in the country's biggest paper. They were put up in a boutique hotel and he went on a major shopping spree which included a new Birkin.
He used a credit card to pay for it.
It didn't bear his name.
Thank Gawd it didn't bear mine, either.
YOU'VE GOT MAIL!!!...from India.
Then there was, as one source said, "..all that mail from India..."
They certainly weren't invites to the Taj Mahal, I can tell you that.
Project Runway India, perhaps?
Despite his living conditions, he always managed to stay in the best hotels, paid for expensive meals and booze (except in the case of Project Run-Away). Meanwhile, he was extremely rude to people who were recipients of his 'largesse.' It was as if his ill-gotten generosity warranted him some kind of subservience from his then-friends.
One of my sources who travelled with him unearthed (take note, BY MISTAKE!!) a clear card book full of credit cards from various institutions issued under different names. I, meanwhile, noticed that his cards were not from first tier institutions like HSBC, American Express, etc. and what I saw were all from state-run American banks.
The source who went shopping with him noted that shopping was done as soon as boutiques opened and the whole spree would be over before noon. I have no logical reason behind this practice but I can guess. MANY GUESSES.
I do have a question which I pose to you discerning readers: How can a Philippine resident with no net worth acquire so many American credit cards?
May I introduce you to one Albert Gonzalez (please be my guest at Google and Wikipedia), a Cuban national of modest means who threw himself a USD 75,000 birthday party, had 15 credit cards and btw was the biggest fish in the ocean of credit fraud?
I'm telling you, I'm in the wrong business. There's no business like fraud business.
Later this week (if I get so frustrated because they don't have my size at Dries) ...Find out how anonymity bred animosity and how he really sweats glitter NOW.
Don't worry kids, the answer to all your questions in Part I will soon be answered!