Crimes of Persuasion: Schemes, scams, frauds. (9780968713303): Les Henderson: Books. The main reason the book was produced was due to the notable shortage of pertinent organized information on the complex topic of telemarketing and investment fraud, despite low government estimates which peg the losses from them at over $45 billion per year in North America. There are several reasons for this which have been overcome by the author as a result of his background and writing skills. First of all, investigation of the complex financial workings of investment fraud required someone with experience in the field of securities. Mr. Henderson, once a Chartered Financial Planner and longtime investor himself, is able to maintain accuracy while simplifying the procedures used by the fraudsters into an understandable and entertaining format. His short, fact-filled examples are broken out into numerous and meaningful categories and classifications which in other works are normally lumped together into tedious statistical or psychological dissertations on fraud as a whole, or too-narrowly focused on one sole example, examined in boring minutiae. Secondly, he looks at the problem both as a victim and as a former sales trainer and direct sales force manager. Knowing the persuasive techniques used by all professional sales people, but which have been subverted to an evil purpose, he leads you step by step from contact to conviction. Thirdly, he is able to distill from reams of court transcripts, involving hundreds of cases, the kernel of truth and understanding which appears to be lacking in other works and governmental advisories. Most importantly, he does not preach the age old sermon of how you should know better if an offer sounds too good. He simply shows what happened to other victims, which number in the millions, then lets you come to your own startling conclusions. This lack of patronizing and the sometimes humorous and always sardonic style of writing shine a new light on a topic that has been hidden by the shame of its victims. Many people, upon reading the book, determine that they have been defrauded in the past by offers which until now they thought were legitimate. Finally, it is hoped that by popularizing an understanding of these schemes, while exposing the organized and criminal nature of the con artists, that law enforcement efforts will be accelerated and court sentences will reflect the impact of the scams upon its victims.
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