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Would you pay money to cover up an affair?

May 20, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
Want to hide a discreet affair or cover up a trip you claimed you took to New York, when you were really in Las Vegas? One business is selling a package of alibis to help people cover up lies. The company claims it is doing nothing wrong. But one well-known commentator says the business is not only unethical, it may be also covering up fraud. Some people discover lying can lead to a better life because they won't get caught. But that is not the case in the real world, where lying has major consequences.

Public figures like John Edwards and Tiger Woods quickly learned their consequences when their affairs were made public.

There is one company though that is in the business of helping people get way with lies and they claim that they could have helped Tiger.

"Most definitely, but he should have called us in advance," said Leonard Brin, Alibi Network partner.

Alibi Network is a Chicago-based company that sells alibis for a price. The company, which claims it has many clients in Southern California, including celebrities, says most of its customers are trying to hide affairs from a spouse or a partner.

"If you're going to New York, you're telling everybody that you are in New York when, in fact, you're in Miami. We can make it happen so that everybody thinks that you're in New York," explained Brin.

For a $75 annual membership, and services ranging from $75 to several thousands of dollars, Alibi Network will send clients fake travel itineraries, including airline tickets, hotel receipts, car rental confirmations and even tickets to sporting events they never went to.

Alibi claims it has call centers all over the world, with operators who speak several languages, so that if a spouse calls from Los Angeles to an area code in Boston, Alibi can forward that call to a cell phone in the Bahamas where the husband or wife is having an affair.

"Somehow, somebody needs to be away from somebody else and they want to cover their tracks," said Brin.

"Integrity means a lot and to have a company that literally promotes and endorses and makes it easier for people to lie and deceive, it's just despicable," said Michael Josephson, Josephson Institute of Ethics.

Josephson is a well-known commentator and the head of the Josephson Institute of Ethics. He says companies like Alibi Network are helping people perpetuate lies. "It's saying, 'We're one of you. We are lousy creeps too. We would be willing to do everything you're doing in your situation and let's band together and find a way we can get away with it,' so it's a gang of jerks,'" said Josephson.

While most say they're honest, people gave mixed answers when asked if they would pay for an alibi.

One said it depended on the situation. Another said she couldn't imagine doing it. One man quickly asked, "Where do I sign up? Where do I find this stuff?"

Josephson says companies like Alibi and its clients could be sued for covering up fraudulent evidence. But, Alibi has a lengthy disclaimer which states the company's services cannot be used for any illegal purposes and that customers act at their own risk.

The company claims it has helped thousands of people cover up their lies and that none have ever been caught. So, would Leonard Brin use his own company to cheat?

"So we all cheat. I'm not cheating. If I wanted to cheat, my wife would have killed me, are you kidding me?" said Brin while laughing.


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