“It’s historic.” In the voice of this volunteer from the AVI collective (Help for victims of influencers), joined by 20 minutes, we feel a bit of emotion. Inevitably, since last June, the volunteers of the collective meet every evening in a “space” on Twitter to sort out new complaints for hours and discuss potential investigations. Note also that the collective has changed its name in the meantime. Historically named AVNM (Help for the victims of Marc and Nadé), the association no longer attacks only the Blata couple, but any influencer deciding to play with the money of its subscribers.

No matter, during the first press conference of the collective given this Monday in the 16th arrondissement of Paris, it was indeed a question of the Blata couple composed of Marc and Nadira (alias Nadé). Among others. Alongside Ziegler & Associés – a law firm specializing in banking law and computer and digital law – the collective has announced that it has filed two complaints for fraud in an organized gang. A first in France. Individual complaints had of course been lodged before, without ever having a considerable impact behind. Here, the strength of the collective intends to change the game.

$6.3 million stolen

The first complaint concerns the Animoon project, an NFT project funded by nearly 5,000 investors around the world. Surfing on the web3 wave, the project used images of famous Pokémon, suggesting that the brand had authorized them. But nothing, zero partnership has really been signed – contrary to what Marc Blata let imagine on his social networks. In total, the project raised nearly $6.3 million… but turned out to be a big scam. “They had announced a project with gifts. There is nothing of all that now, only empty boxes, ”says the AVI collective. Among these gifts, luxurious clothes or trips to the end of the world and of course NFTs.

If the scam is international, some French influencers found themselves involved in the project. As we said earlier, this is the case of Marc Blata who had advertised it on his social networks. The same Marc Blata, moreover, who initiated the “Blata gang”, targeted by the second complaint that the collective will file.

Become a trader in no lesson

Subscriber to all scams, the former reality TV candidate was recently singled out for his lucrative business launched in trading. And at the risk of repeating ourselves on this soap opera, here is a little reminder of the facts. For more than two years, from their luxurious villa in Dubai, Marc and Nadé Blata have been offering their fans to follow them in copy-trading activities. All this via the very accessible Telegram platform.

A case presented as a real gold mine which nevertheless turns out to be particularly dangerous. As a reminder, the Financial Markets Authority (AMF) had calculated between 70 and 80% losses for these products. However, today, it remains very complicated to quantify the losses of the victims of Blatagang – unlike the Animoon project.

In addition to its “historical” nature, the volunteers of the AVI collective hope that this complaint will lead to the opening of an investigation, despite the distance from Dubai. “The goal is to stop all this and recognize the many victims who must have accounted for some of the heavy losses,” regrets the collective. Also, thanks to these complaints, the volunteers wish to make the public – young or not – aware of the many excesses of influencers.

Drop shipping, the tree that hides the forest

Complaints which also come after a long-awaited meeting at Bercy organized by the Minister of the Economy in early December. Following the round table with influencers [mais aucun de ceux concernés]Bruno Le Maire announced the launch of a consultation “to support and supervise influencers”.

Is this enough in relation to the scale of the phenomenon? “It’s very good to have dialogue to raise awareness, but it’s almost confined to drop shipping. Except that the abuses of influencers go further today: financial products, humanitarian kitties, fake branded products or even illegal medical practices. Discussing is good, but at some point, we will have to act, ”regrets the member of the collective.

According to the latter, means are still to be provided to apply the regulatory laws. “In particular for the Directorate of Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Prevention (DGCCRF)”, underlines the collective. In the future, better regulation of the platforms is also requested. Indeed, while Snapchat has included stricter rules in its regulations to regulate the profession of influence, Instagram is still lagging behind in moderating content rich in scams.

More complaints to come?

This Monday will therefore mark a new turning point in the profession of influence. While for the first time in France, influencers will be targeted by complaints of organized gang scams, others could follow in the future. Off the radar for the moment, the files are piling up against the ex-candidate of reality tv Dylan Thiry. Fake jackpots for humanitarian trips and promotions of drugs against cancer… the excesses of influence have no limit. And the AVI collective has understood this well.

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