Sunday, June 8, 2014


For more details, see the blog posts listed at the bottom of this page.


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Anglen, Robert  
Date: Sun, Sep 28, 2014 at 9:40 AM
Subject: Story on camelback consign
To: Glenn Michaels 

Story is in today's paper. Your blog is mentioned prominently in the story. Thanks for all of your help. Here is a link:


Just last weekend I opined that the Arizona's Republic's June 1, 2014 article (pages E1 & E5) exposing the nefarious doings of Camelback Consign & Design's owner, Mike Burns, had appeared  "far too late to protect the unwary souls who might have been alerted had that story appeared months earlier. Too late, I say, because Camelback Consign & Design had closed at least a week or two before this story ran." 

I was wrong. Thanks to that story, one ElJuana Hermansen, the owner of eight paintings given to Michael Burns for resale purposes - paintings that subsequently disappeared - has recovered at least six of the missing paintings. The story of their recovery is both prosaic and miraculous. It can be found online by clicking the following quote (link) or by turning to page E1 and E5 of the June 8, 2014 Arizona Republic.

"The return of the 20th-century American oil painting, "Silence," by Flavio E. Cabral, was the culmination of efforts by a number of people who helped unravel the mystery of the missing artwork last week, including the art dealer, the owner of the auction house and the buyer of the painting, who willingly gave it back when he realized it had been stolen."
Elsewhere in the story, Mr. Anglen reports that Burns has been served a subpoena by the Attorney General's office. I suppose I can now acknowledge that I was contacted by an entirely different branch of the AG's office than the one that so badly flubbed the dub as reported in my post: AZ's AG: A Chronology of Neglect. The special agent reached me on April 24th. I have since referred a number of other victims of Camelback Consign & Scam to the same special agent. 

Apologies to Mr. Anglen and the Arizona Republic. Kudos, instead. But ONLY as regards this one instance. 

One also reads the following in the article: 
 "Bill Roach, co-owner of the property (where Burns did business - yours truly)... said Burns has left dozens of customers in the lurch."

That is exactly what I've been blogging about for months and months... 

to no avail. (See the preceding post:  AZ Rep Breaks Consignment Fraud Story... a little too late.) Had the Republic, other reputable news outlets, the BBB or even the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce researched the issues behind this travesty, many, many more people might have been spared the loss of valued items, not to mention the very considerable financial and emotional distress associated with it. Quite frankly, I still think the AG's office might have acted faster, too, however grateful I may be that it has chosen to act at all. 

And - pray tell - whose taxpayer dollars will fund the police work, the AG's investigation, court trials, etc., that will result from allowing this parasitic beast to feast on the lifeblood of the unsuspecting for so very long?  

For example, the following was posted to my blog on March 31, 2014 at 2:00 PM
 I, too, have been victimized by Mike Burns quite recently and the whole debacle has been traumatizing. 
In October of 2013, I consigned highly valuable family antiques and collectibles with Mike Burns, owner of Camelback Consign and Design, and have painfully regretted the decision. Like others, he was the nicest guy when it came to removing the items from my recently passed grandmother's apartment and my house, as I was going through a divorce at that time.
  He promised not to sell one piece until we'd sat down and gone over each line item and agreed upon the pricing. Well, I could never get him to commit to sitting down with me to discuss the value(s) of the items. He always had an excuse, lie, or story about why we could not move forward. 
  The beginning of 2014, I borrowed money for a plane ticket, hired more movers, rented a moving truck and paid Mike Burns a visit at his shop. Immediately after entering, I saw a lot of my stuff with prices displayed as well as "sold" signs. I couldn't believe it! I was horrified. I was able to recover some items, however, the majority is still missing (and we're talking hundreds of thousands of dollars as well as the sentimental value). I called the police who did respond, however, did absolutely nothing except tell me to hire a lawyer.
Last I checked, theft is unlawful, why is this crook getting away with this? And repeatedly??? Mike Burns proceeded to tell me the rest of my property was offsite at another storage location or at Brinks...some kind of highly secure storage venue. I offered to take my movers and truck to the offsite storage location yet he refused to tell me the address. Instead he promised his movers were bringing my stuff and that he's pick up my silver at Brinks as well as the 17th century dining room chairs he sold to a "friend".
 I went to his store and waited all day and all night for five consecutive days. I was literally begging him for my stuff, tears pouring down my face, sitting in his shop at 1:00am. I finally realized that I was powerless -- he did not care of my circumstance or that I came all the way back to claim what is rightfully mine because he is a predator and crook. There never were movers allegedly bringing the rest of my property...Mike Burns was prepared to sit it out with me until I would just go away, which I finally did. I had no choice at the time. I had to get back to Alabama and begin a new life, find a job, etc. 
 I did hire an attorney is AZ to write a menacing letter to Mike Burns demanding the immediate return of my property and included a manifest of missing items. Mr. Burns did not respond. 
 After losing my grandmother (I was her caregiver) and my husband, I moved back to Alabama (my home state) and continually called and emailed Mike Burns. Not only was he at many times unresponsive but he knew he had me over a barrel, as he'd also volunteered to have his "professional movers" move my furniture I was taking with me back to Alabama. Six weeks later I was still sleeping on a blow-up mattress with not one piece of furniture in my new rental house. I finally got in touch with one of his "professional movers" who after paying him $7k delivered roughly 60% of my furniture. Yes, this gets confusing. So, now Mike Burns has in possession my antiques and collectibles as well as the furniture and items (I) NEVER agreed to consign. 

As it happens, certain items belonging to Courtney, the lady who wrote that post - delicate, antique porcelain birds - were waiting to be unpacked at the very point I was removing my remaining items from the premises of Camelback Consign & Scam. They have yet to be returned or paid for, according to Courtney. 

I also recall Burns telling me about the very valuable paintings he expected to receive and quickly sell at some point. (I simply can't recall the date. I believe he said that expected to be able to pay me off from his commission on the sale.)

God knows I tried.

"When he arrived in the late afternoon, Burns came with five paintings and contended that he was working with the FBI."

A Little Speculation Goes a Long Way!

HEY! Wow, if Mike was working with the FBI, what you think the chances are that, Justin, his son, was working with the NSA or CIA? No wonder they got away with so much for so long. They were probably trained agents gone rogue or something. 

That might also explain why they didn't have any hard assets in their own names. They kept the loot and their assets socked away in secret bank accounts or forgotten underground fallout shelters from the 1950s that only agents would know about. 

On the other hand, maybe they worked for S.M.E.R.S.H.!  Wowie. Stay tuned to this blog for further updates to this astonishing story.

Mike Burns wasn't born yesterday. He wasn't born on the Fourth of July, either. NOPE. Mike Burns was born on 9/11 in 1952. He was destined. 

I don't know if the truth will set you free. But fuss loud enough with a big 'nough bunch a friends and I swear folks 'll do near anything to get you to shut up. Fast as they can. 

1 comment:

  1. The issues involving consignment stores has been a popular topic amongst scholars for many years. Underestimate consignment stores at your peril. While it is becoming a hot topic for debate, it is yet to receive proper recognition for laying the foundations of democracy.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.