Butler Sourcing - Yusuf Uqdah attempted to scam me

From December 1, 2010, until January 15, 2011, I did contract work for an individual whose birth name is Yusuf Uqdah. Yusuf Uqdah is also known with the alias of Joseph Heller, but he possibly uses other aliases - he actually created a profile on Facebook using the name John Wilks and his own email address, yusufu17@yahoo.com. Yusuf Uqdah is now engaged with a business venture named Tribes & Fashion, but at the time was the owner of a company known, among the others, as Butler Sourcing.

After 6 weeks of working with Yusuf Uqdah, we agreed that we should cease our collaboration. Mr. Uqdah first attempted not to pay me for the work I performed during the first two weeks of January. In February, however, he claimed to have accidentally sent me the payment twice. Rebuffing my offer to visit the bank and correct the mistake, he proceeded to take actions which were apparently meant to scam me. After his attempts failed, he proceeded to post a series of anonymous comments about me, stating a series of false claims. Unfortunately, he has deleted my response to his claims from this thread and I feel forced to warn other against this individual who has already many negative reviews on this site, both against himself and his company.

What follows is my original reply to Yusuf Uqdah:

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I have to admit that I was somewhat puzzled when I found this series of libelous claims about me. In the first place, I was obviously surprised to read such frivolous and malicious fabrications. In the second place, I was intrigued by the fact the author of these posts chose to stay anonymous, in spite of being known for using many names and aliases. In fact, the author of these posts is an individual who initially introduced himself to me as Joseph Heller. Shortly thereafter, however, the same individual announced that he should be addressed as Yusuf Uqdah, which he claimed as his birth name. The same individual, however, has apparently created a Facebook profile under the name of John Wilks, using the email address yusufu17@yahoo.com. At the moment of this writing, Yusuf Uqdah (a.k.a. Joseph Heller, a.ka. John Wilks) seems to be engaged in a business venture called Tribes & Fashion, which operates the site http://www.tribesandfashion.com/. At the time of the our 6-weeks collaboration, however, he owned and managed a company that, similarly to its owner, had gone through several name changes, having been known as:

- Heller Sourcing

- Butler Digitizing

- Digital EMB

- Butler Promotions

- Butler Sourcing

- Butler Patches

- Butler Custom Caps

- Butler Custom Labels

The decision of Yusuf Uqdah (a.k.a. Joseph Heller, a.ka. John Wilks) to post his falsifications anonymously seemed counterintuitive at first, but the reason behind his decision was actually easy to discover. In fact, searches on this site for his names (and those of his company) returned hundreds of negative posts from a variety of sources. The allegations against Mr. Uqdah cover a range of topics, from customer complaints for not receiving the goods/services they purchased, to statements about his dishonesty and lack of integrity. While it would be impossible to summarize all the negative comments about Yusuf Uqdah, a post from a personal acquaintance is indicative of the general tone of such comments: "I knew Yusuf since he was at La Salle High School and I knew him at Berkeley. He has always been a scammer thru his career. I wouldn't trust him or his actions at all. He was alway unethical and very dishonest. Please be careful when dealing with his company" (http://butler-patches.pissedconsumer.com/they-did />

While refuting all the baseless lies written by Yusuf Uqdah (a.k.a. Joseph Heller, a.ka. John Wilks) on this page would take a lengthy essay, the following is a summary of how our 6-weeks collaboration.

On our first meeting, he introduced himself as Joseph Heller and the owner Butler Sourcing. He described his company as a mature organization with a solid market presence, a strong IT infrastructure and operations in China, the Philippines and the USA. In time I found out that everything I was told was either a lie or a gross misrepresentation. In fact:

- the real name of the person I met was Yusuf Uqdah, with Joseph Heller being only one of possibly several aliases. When asked about the reason for not using his real name, Mr. Uqdah claimed that using his actual name would hurt his business as he believed that "most Americans aren't smart enough to understand that not all Muslims are terrorists";

- Butler Sourcing (and all its various reincarnations and reinterpretations) had barely escaped bankruptcy. In particular, the Philippines branch of the company had retrenched in the previous months and had been considered for elimination;

- the financial viability of the firm was highly questionable, with at least one contractor (whom I personally know) not receiving the last payment owed by Yusuf Uqdah. Continuous reminders to reduce costs were sent by Mr. Uqdah to his employees almost daily;

- the operations in the United States merely consisted in Yusuf Uqdah's mother receiving the packages for Butler Sourcing's customers at her own residence in California, before forwarding them to the intended recipients. Mr. Uqdah later explained this as an expedient to trick his customers into believing that the merchandise they received had been manufactured in the States or, at the very least, to hide the fact that it had been produced in China;

- the IT infrastructure was outdated and inadequate, with the company's operations relying on a buggy application, written by inexperienced software developers and hosted on severely underpowered hardware;

- Butler Sourcing's web applications were open to intrusions and attacks, which Mr. Uqdah blamed on a legion of disgruntled, former employees/contractors.

After passing a programming test administered by an associate, whom Yusuf Uqdah (a.k.a. Joseph Heller, a.ka. John Wilks) defined as a "personal friend and very accomplished programmer", I was persuaded to join Butler Sourcing. Immediately after joining the company, however, Mr. Uqdah's gross misrepresentation of Butler Sourcing became apparent, as the severe challenges faced by its firm made for a troubled work environment. Following my disillusionment with Butler Sourcing and the sudden loss of my mother in the beginning of January 2011 (the "personal problems" to which Mr. Uqdah referred to in his post), I made the decision to end my collaboration with the company on January 15, 2011. At the request of Mr. Uqdah, I committed to assisting his business associates throughout the month of January, whenever necessary. While Mr. Uqdah suggested that he would compensate me for any work I would perform after January 15, his actions were clearly indicative of the fact that he had no intention of paying me at all, even for the work I had already done. In fact, he immediately resorted to using the same excuses and techniques which he had used to avoid paying another contractor. Incidentally, I later found out from the posts on this site that Mr. Uqdah uses similar techniques to avoid issuing refunds to his dissatisfied customers. Nevertheless, I assisted Mr. Uqdah's business associates as necessary through the end of January, without ever inquiring about the status of my payment.

In the beginning of February, much to my surprise, Mr. Uqdah contacted me online and informed me that he had accidentally sent my payment, covering the first half of January, twice. I promptly offered to visit the bank the next day so that I could rectify his mistake, but Mr. Uqdah invited me to wait for instructions. I was actually contacted by phone from someone who claimed to be an employee of the financial institution where both Mr. Uqdah and I were banking. Following the directions I was given, I sent a detailed message to the bank through their online banking system, authorizing the partial refund to Mr. Uqdah but wording my authorization in such a way that would prevent him from claiming any refund in excess of the accidental payment. In the meantime, Mr. Uqdah had sent me a very rude and arrogant email, accusing me of dishonesty and claiming that I didn't intend to return his money. I explained to him that a technical issue had caused a delay of a few days and assured him that I had done exactly as I was instructed to do. Weary of his verbal hostility, I nevertheless took measures meant to prevent him from contacting me online in the future, confident that I could still be reached by phone when needed. I monitored the status of the secondary account that I had used exclusively to transact with Mr. Uqdah for a few days and then, assuming that the transaction was pending completion, I simply left the matter alone. Once again, I was reassured by the fact that I could be contacted by phone, if necessary.

As it happened, I never received any call, neither from Yusuf Uqdah (a.k.a. Joseph Heller, a.ka. John Wilks), nor from the financial institution. Only several months later, after transferring my funds to another bank, I realized that the refund to Mr. Uqdah had never been completed. At first, I assumed that Mr. Uqdah had changed his mind and decided to compensate me for the assistance I provided to his associates during the second half of January. After finding this series of posts, however, I am inclined to believe that the supposed mistake made by Mr. Uqdah was part of a failed attempt to scam me, possibly using a technique such as the "advanced fee fraud". Even discounting my prior knowledge of Mr. Uqdah's ill reputation, I can't otherwise explain why the bank never completed what should have been a legitimate transaction. Furthermore, in spite of all the tough talk on this page, Mr. Uqdah was perfectly aware of my whereabouts and contact information for many months after our collaboration ended; yet, he never tried to reach out to me.

Yusuf: I am not quite sure of what your real intentions were, but it is clear that you are, once again, lying. If you had merely intended to receive a refund for the "accidental transaction", as you falsely claimed, you would have obviously followed a different course of actions. For instance, you could have let me visit the bank and rectify your "mistake", as I offered to do. You could have called me or sent me a text message on my phone, as any logical person would do. You could have even visited me at my place of residence, if you so chose, as you had the precise address. Instead of pursuing a sensible or logical solution, you chose to spread anonymous lies about me, apparently incensed by your failure to scam me. It is, therefore, quite amusing that you would label me a "cheater", when I never took any action to deceive you and, in fact, never even contacted you about my payment. I would point out the hypocrisy of your actions but, having been "always unethical and very dishonest", as your former high school friend wrote, I am sure you wouldn't be particularly disturbed.

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Joseph Heller

Jan 07 #927124

This is Joseph Heller and I am the person that is mentioned in the above post. I have addressed this untrue post before, but I stumbled across it today and I feel like its time to address this post again 3 years later.
My Mother is Jewish and my Father is Muslim, which is the reason I was given the name Yusuf. I grew up absolutely hating my name. My name wasn't an American name like most of my classmates, which made me receive a lot of unwanted attention. However, the catalyst towards truly disliking my name was the fact that mastermind behind the first World Trade Center bombing was named Yusuf. My name received even more attention and scorn from my classmates. As I got older and there was additional terrorist attacks on my country, I became even more alienated from my name and my father's religion.
When I started my business I decided to change my name to Joseph Heller so I wouldn't face the negative stigma associated with Yusuf. Joseph is the English translation of Yusuf and Heller is my Mother's maiden name. Later in life I became closer to my Jewish heritage, and my new name made even more sense.
The claims above that I am changing my name to fraud our customer's is absolutely ridiculous. Furthermore, my company has continued to grow over 50% every year. My company has a very bright future, and I am privileged to work with an amazing and dedicated team. If there was any truth to the accusations above, our company would not enjoy the amazing growth
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1 0 Reply
Anonymous

Aug 30, 2014 #863498

Dear Celeste,
Thank you very much for your honesty and taking the time out of your busy schedule to follow up on your experience with The/Studio. What meant the most to me was your comment "Not many things in life go smoothly, but I am thrilled that our team was cared about and we received our patches in time for our first game." This defines our goal at The/Studio. Manufacturing is a complicated process, but we strive each and every day to make this complicated process simple for our customer's.
I'm glad that you saw first hand that we serve over 2000 customer's every month, 24,000 customer's a year, and the fact that we have only around 10 negative comments, actually speaks to the fact that we are a customer focused organization.
Celeste please accept from me a 50% discount on your next order as a thank you for taking the time to let us know about your experience.
Sincerely,
Joseph Heller CEO The/Studio thestudio.com

0 0 Reply
Anonymous

Aug 22, 2014 #860305

I have received the patches for the girls soccer team from The Studio, and they were perfectly on time. I was a bit anxious due to some comments about the business and affiliated businesses. The patches are gorgeous!!! I couldn't be happier that they arrived so quickly. I will definitely recommend ordering patches from The Studio to anyone and everyone. Not many things in life go smoothly, but I am thrilled that our team was cared about and we received our patches in time for our first game. The girls are smiling!!!!!

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Celeste.G-123

Aug 14, 2014 #856543

I am presently waiting on a custom patch order from The Studio, which is affiliated with Butler Sourcing. I am aware of several names and phone numbers and addresses. I am dealing with Tom Smith, who has a heavy foreign accent.... My patches are supposed to arrive shortly. There are 16 teenage girls awaiting their arrival. I did not research the company until things turned a little odd. I hope that this business has turned things around and intends to be reputable. I WILL return here, as well as other sites, to post the result. Past issues don't always equal future deception. But we shall see..........

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Zach

Jan 29, 2014 #779800

I stumbled across this exchange. I have known Joseph both professionally and personally for about 7 years and I felt compelled to leave a comment. As a fellow entrepreneur, I understand the challenges of doing business. I talked to Joseph a lot during the time when his company almost went bankrupt, because I was also going through similar financial problems during that time. Joseph's company might have had issues with service and quality during this time (4 years ago), but I find it absurd that people would say his company was involved in any sort of fraud.
During this time Joseph tried to grow his business too quickly and as a result there was half a year where he was not able to provide the service and quality that his customer's expected. Its really that simple. Fortunately, Joseph's company is doing very well now, and has grown exponentially since that time.
Joseph is an extremely honest and moral individual, so it hurts me to read these comments about him. I see Joseph as a role model, because he literally had no money and at the age of 25 started a company which now employs more than 50 people. Its an inspiration to me.
Lastly, Joseph's birth name is Yusuf, but he changed his name to Joseph Heller, because his mother is Jewish and his father is Muslim (which is pretty awesome). Joseph feels closer to his Jewish culture and heritage, so he changed his name. Let's not turn his name change in to some sort of conspiracy. And if you knew Joseph, you
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Response

Sep 28, 2012 #548018

#1 - As I have said we have produced over 70,000 orders, and 99.9% of them are completed without incident. We produce customized products, and of course there are problems from time to time. All of our customers are provided with a money back guarantee or if they so choose we redo their product free of charge. This policy is rigorously enforced.

#2 - You make libelous allegations that I am running a fraudulent business. Our company completes over 1500 transactions per month via credit card. The company that processes our credit cards requires that we have less than a 1.5% chargeback rate for us to maintain our credit card merchant account. Our credit card merchant account has been in good standing since the inception of my business over 6 years ago. If we were running a fraudulent enterprise, it would absolutely be impossible to find a merchant to process our credit cards. In fact because we have so few chargebacks, we are able to have our rates reviewed and reduced every 6 months. In case you don't know what a chargeback is, all credit card customers have agreements with Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express that if they feel a transaction is fraudulent, or they did not receive the product or service that they expected, they have the right to initiate a claim to have their money returned. The customer is only required to go to our company first and request a resolution to their issue, and if we don't provide a favorable resolution, they
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Damiano Ferrari (the real one)

Sep 23, 2012 #545892

Anonymous, while it is unfortunate that you, too, had the unpleasant experience of dealing with Yusuf, I am glad that you found this thread and were able to share your experience.

Be prepared to having to post your information about Yusuf Uqdah/Joseph Heller/John Wilks/whatever-his-name-is-this-week several times. While he now claims that he will "let people decide for themselves who is right and who is wrong", the reality is much different (surprised?). In fact, he kept reporting my messages about him until they were removed, forcing me to repost them each time. Not happy with that, he tried to hide this thread from Google by retroactively appending "by Yusuf Uqdah" to the title of each entry in his blog. As he was obviously failing in his efforts, I expected him to append "written by Yusuf Uqdah - edited by Yusuf Uqdah - approved by Yusuf Uqdah" to his blog posts, but instead he attempted in vain to make his blog more prominent by moving it to its own domain.

Throughout all this, he tried to defend his point of view in increasingly bizarre and comical ways. At first, he claimed that the information I had divulged about him was "confidential" (implicitly admitting that it was true). Later, he had the brilliant idea of complaining that my claims were untrue, but still "confidential" (so, obviously, still true). Finally, after I offered (for the n-th time) to return his money at the condition that he rectify the lies that he had written about
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@Anonymous

Sep 18, 2012 #543593

Dear Anonymous,

#1 - You worked with me almost 4 years ago, so its a bit surprising that you would like to use this as a venue to reply to my blog, which by the way was just a general observation concerning my experiences in business.

#2 - If you would like people to take your post serious, I suggest that you use your real name. Otherwise your comments will be seen as the work of a disgruntled ex-employee that is just trying to do damage to a reputable business.

#3 - You employ people "not to order from Butler", but have you thought about the potential effect that you may be having on innocent people? Regardless of what you feel about me personally, over 40 people make their living by working for the company, and almost all of our staff is paid based on performance bonuses. You are unfairly taking money from them with your post.

#4 - I estimate that in the past 4 years we have completed over 70,000 individual orders. Most of the complaints about our company online is from one disgruntled ex-employee, and there are a trickle of complaints from legitimate customers. Even if there are 100 complaints about our company on the Internet, which there are not even close to that many, it means that 99.99% of all orders went smoothly.

#5 - I agree that there was a minority of employees that personally did not like me or my management style. However, the vast majority of employees that did work in my
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Anonymous

Sep 13, 2012 #541452

Yusuf, I posted this in response to your blog post, but since you deleted it, and probably will delete it again since you know it's true, here it is again:

Google Butler Patches BBB and you'll see a ton of complaints. Who are you trying to fool that these are all made up? Your pissedconsumer complaints were just the easiest outlet for all of your upset customers. You're a joke Yusuf. And nice job playing the race card. You come to China and hire a bunch of minorities from the US, pay them Chinese salaries with illegal Chinese tourist and business visas, and get cheap labor from China and the Philippines, make all kinds of promises and then fire your employees when you find a cheaper option and you think they're racists or jealous of you? Do you think you're the first non-white person to own a company? You're an awful boss with a huge ego and no integrity. Everybody you've ever worked with knows the truth about you, but you go ahead and write your blog posts blaming everyone but yourself, I'm sure it makes you feel better, but everyone that knows you knows the truth. You may have lots of money, but no one is jealous of you - you're just an awful, awful person. Everyone liked you until you screwed them over and showed your true colors.

0 0 Reply
Anonymous

Sep 10, 2012 #540243

Ask anyone who has ever worked for Butler and they will probably tell you that Yusuf is a cheat and takes advantage of his employees. I can totally believe Damiano's story, it sounds like a typical Butler story. You put in your work only to get shafted in the end, and you come up with your lame excuses as to why you're right and why everyone is really jealous of you. Yusuf, you have no integrity, you've proved it countless times by screwing over pretty much everyone who has ever worked for or gotten close to you. This is also probably the reason why you have so many upset customers. I am choosing to remain anonymous for privacy reasons. Stay away from Butler Patches and The Studio.

0 0 Reply
Yusuf Uqdah

Jun 14, 2012 #495967

Damiano,

I'm glad that you are willing to return the $1500. This entire incident is about much more than $1500. It was about the fact that my company met every last obligation to you stipulated in the contract that you and I mutually signed. You were paid on time and you were paid everything that you were entitled to, and I felt betrayed when you didn't return the money that was accidentally sent to you. As I said in my original posting, I had absolutely no animosity towards you before this money incident, and I was only disappointed that after only 6 weeks we had to find a new programmer. What upset me the most was that we met the terms of the contract, and you repaid me by not returning the money which was rightfully ours. Whether you knowingly ran away with the money as I believe, or whether it was part of an honest mistake as you claim, clearly cannot be sorted out over the Internet.

$1500 was accidentally transferred to you, and again your attempt at trying to say that this was part of some fraud is childless and ridiculous. There is no such fraud that involves wire transferring additional funds to an individual. A simple understanding of how wire transfers work, renders your claim to be without merit. Please show me proof of a fraud that is initiated by the victim receiving money in their account. If this is part of some fraud, I would love to be a victim of such a fraud. It is also unethical and unprofessional to try to assert that a
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Damiano Ferrari (the real one)

May 24, 2012 #485088

Yusuf Uqdah: it is very disappointing that, once I have responded to your libelous claims, you have taken to reporting my comments until they are deleted from this site. Unfortunately, all the information I have posted about you is authentic and verifiable, as demonstrated by all the links I have provided with information about you.

0 0 Reply
Damiano Ferrari (the real one)

May 13, 2012 #479624

I am assuming that the last response is from Yusuf Uqdah, although it was posted once again anonymously.

Yusuf Uqdah, last year you made the decision to post false claims about me on this web site. For several months you had many opportunities to contact me by phone, but instead chose to personally attack me on these pages. As long as the thread you started about me stays in existence, I will only communicate to you through this site. It is quite unfortunate that, instead of addressing the numerous concerns I have brought up about you, you insist on posting anonymously and reporting my replies. I have already addressed your concern about your refund in very clear terms.

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Skype or Phone

May 12, 2012 #479300

D.F. you have my email address. Please provide me with your Skype details or your phone number and I will contact you. Through the course of this entire matter both of us have never had the opportunity to actually have a real dialogue.

I think it would serve both of our interests to actually discuss this issue over the phone or Skype, where we can hopefully work on resolving our differences.

If your interested in truly resolving this matter, I suggest this as being the best and most professional way for us to resolve our issues.

I'll wait for your response.

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me

Apr 30, 2012 #473875

mr yusuf never change... always a scammer and a liar lol

i was working with butler for many months and mr yusuf/joseph fired me with a *** excuse. my work was 90% done but he never paid me for the last weeks... he kept coming up with bs and then stopped replying to me... never deal with this yusuf thief

0 0 Reply
To Damiano

Apr 30, 2012 #473570

In response to your message:

Yusuf, I stand behind everything I have written about you. You were hardly "fair" or "mature", and I every reason to believe that you attempted to scam me. I don't need to reply to your newest lies as I don't need to: simply reading your older comments reveals that you have never once attempted to contact me by phone, as I previously stated.

Dear Damiano,

Its unfortunate that you are taking this route. Its unclear to me what type of fraud you think our company could have perpetrated against you by accidentally sending you a wire transfer twice. Our company was clearly the victim here, as you admit that the money has still not been returned to our company.

You claim that I did not try to get in touch with you, but I have records of every last email sent to you starting from January until well into June 2011. Would you like me to send those to you? I also have the records of my Linked In correspondence to you as well. Are you claiming that you did not receive any of these emails or my LinkedIn correspondence?

Lets assume for a minute that for whatever reason that you missed my phone calls, you missed my Skype, Gtalk, email and LinkedIn attempts to get in touch with you. Now it is clear that Pissed Consumer is a means for us to communicate. Are you willing to do the right thing and return our company's money? You have conveniently refused to address this.
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To Damiano

Apr 30, 2012 #473569

Dear Damiano Ferrari,

Earlier I responded to your comments, but I would like to respond in a little more depth this time. Now that you have inadvertently contacted me through this website, it is my true hope that we can resolve this matter in a mature and professional manner.

Before joining my company I was very open with you about the fact that we had an outdated IT infrastructure and that it would be your job to help us rebuild our IT platform. I also told you that in 2010 my company was facing the prospect of bankruptcy. In fact we met several times in late 2010 at our subleased office, and I explained to you that we did not yet have our own office because of the tenuous financial circumstances of our company. During this time in late 2010 our financial situation had improved slightly and we looked at an office together, and I even asked for your help in helping me to identify a real estate agent to show us offices. I was very upfront with you that our company was a bootstrapped startup, and that I was a young entrepreneur trying to build a company that would hopefully have a lot of potential in the future. I told you there was a lot of opportunity for growth in our company, and I offered you a pay increase from your previous company. I am 100% sure that I made it perfectly clear to you that we were a struggling startup, and for your own personal reasons which may have included that we offered you a higher salary, you decided to take the
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0 0 Reply
Damiano

Apr 26, 2013 #642306

although youre argument is compelling i decided to keep the money. thank u.

0 0 Reply

Great comment! Would you like to convert it into review?

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