HOME to Tour, Vacation & Hotel Guide for Costa RicaResponse to Comments on AMcostarica.com
Home Page Article, March 3, 2009
Re: Website Internet Fraud Warning

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1CostaRicaLink.com IS NOT:
Associated with 1-costaricalink.com (dash - )
Or Associated with Flamingolink SA
Or Associated with Joern & Angela Malek
Or Associated with discoverytravelworld.com - the new website operated by them
Or responsible for their debts or bookings.

On March 3, 2009, click here for AM Costa Rica news article, an story appeared near the top of the home page in which my website, www.1CostaRicaLink.com, my ex-partners web sites, www.1-costaricalink.com (note the DASH) and www.discoverytravelworld.com were all mentioned.

In that regard, please note the following facts:
1CostaRicaLink.com, this website owned by Forest Geiger, does NOT take any money from tourists or charge their credit cards. 1CostaRicaLink.com only advertises for reputable, licensed travel agencies in Costa Rica. Any credit card charges made to the traveler are made in the agency's name only. In addition, a number of hotels advertise on my website, and the individual hotel makes the reservation and charges the travelers credit card. There have never been any complaints against me or my website, except by the unfortunate confusion with my ex-partner, Joern Malek and his wife, Angela, and their website, www.1-costaricalink.com, notice the DASH in their domain name. Click here for earler information and traveler complaints against them and their website, 1DASHcostaricalink.com.

Apparently, due to the volume of complaints against www.1-costaricalink.com (DASH) on www.tripadvisor.com, www.fodors.com and http://www.frommers.com, Joern and Angela Malek are trying to operate under the cover of a new logo on www.1DASHcostaricalink.com, which looks like this:

The Maleks have abandoned the parrot logo, which was similar in design to mine, which is at the top of this page.

In addition, it appears that they are operating a new website, www.discoverytravelworld.com, and if you click on the copyright notice at the bottom of the page, you are sent to this address: http://www.1-costaricalink.com/about_costa_rica_link/privacy_policy_eng.htm, and at the bottom of the page, you can see the two operations are clearly linked together. It says:

"1-CostaRicaLink.com and DiscoveryTravelWorld.com contain links to other Web sites that are not operated by us. 1-CostaRicaLink.com and DiscoveryTravelWorld.com is not responsible for the privacy practices of any Web site it does not operate. 1-CostaRicaLink.com and DiscoveryTravelWorld.com is the sole operator of its websites. If you would like to contact us for any reason regarding our privacy practice please send us an e-mail using any of our contact forms, or write us to the following address:

Attn. Angela Segura de Malek
Discovery Travel World, S.A
Santa Ana
P.O. Box 497-6150 Santa Ana
San JosÚ
Costa Rica"

Complaints against the business practices of Discovery Travel World are already showing up on travel sites, like: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g291982-i813-k2442572-l15292378-Scam_Rip_off_alert-Costa_Rica.html;
and http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g291982-i813-k2526206-l16265151-Trip_Report_for_December_Vacation-Costa_Rica.html.

In addition, hotel owners that have had tourists show up at their reservation desk with vouchers from Discovery Travel World, are also posting warnings, like this hotel site: http://www.hotelcostacoral.com/travel-agency-message. In talking to the owners of this hotel recently, they told me that four different groups of tourists showed up over a period of time with fake vouchers!

Also, mentioned in AM Costa Rica today was a reference to an earlier article, half way down this page: http://www.amcostarica.com/020909.htm, titled, Long-running dispute over Web site leads to fraud trial". As AM Costa Rica mentioned in the March 3rd story, the trial was suspended by the request of Joern Malek's new attorney, so that he could "study the case". This occurred after Malek's old attorney suddenly withdrew from the case a week before the trial! It is clear from the evidence that I was a business partner, not an ex-employee that stole a website, as Malek told the prosecutor, and just perhaps Mr. Malek is not too anxious to face me in court, and see me exonerated, after spreading lies against me for the last 4 years.

In the meantime, I maintain that he is now treating the traveling public no better than he treated me. To the traveling public, I would issue this warning, that based on the apparent facts, it would be best to "BEWARE of THE DASH", and now, Discovery Travel World, and other websites that apparently he may also be generating. Deal with LICENSED travel agencies, such as the ones I do busines with, or directly with the hotel.


You may be in danger of having fake reservations made in your name if your website appears on 1-costaricalink.com! However, in this instance below, the hotel operator PAID to advertise on 1-costaricalink.com. After becoming suspicious of a failed reservation for last December, the operator "baited" Discovery Travel World with a reservation request to see how they would handle it, pretending to be a traveler coming from Canada with two dogs.

The hotel operators closing comments to Sascha "Fitzgerald", really Sascha Malek, Joern Malek's son, are below. Or, click here to see the whole email reservation exchange. The name of the hotel and manager have been removed per their request. Remember, the hotel operator was to receive the reservation requests directly, as he PAID TO ADVERTISE on 1-costaricalink.com.

-------- Original Message -------- Subject: Re: Secure Speed Reservation Request from Discovery Travel World
Date: Wed, 11 Feb 2009 02:06:30 -0600
From: xxxxxxxx
To: info@discoverytravelworld.com

Dear Sascha,

Josh Baker is a fictitious person I made up to make this reservation. I have heard reports about 1 dash Costaricalink scamming people and I have even talked with Forrest, the owner of 1costaricalink.com (without the dash) about you and you have only confirmed my suspicions. The hotel was NEVER contacted about this reservation (not even for availability, which you supposedly did), nor do we ever give you permission to pre-charge our guests' credit cards. Their information should be passed to us. From the reports I have heard all over the internet, you charge the guests' cards and then never pay the hotels. We never agreed to accept any sort of voucher from you with a supposed prepaid reservation and given the comments from other hotels and comments on the internet, we never will.

I am going to need you to remove our ad from your website immediately. I do not want any other tourists being caught in your scams. You should be ashamed of yourselves for what you are doing.

Signed xxxxxxxxxxxxx
general manager


In addition to the above, numerous hotels have written to me at 1CostaRicaLink.com asking where their advertising is on my site that they have paid for. Since our sites and names are so similar, the Maleks let the advertisers assume that the good search engine ratings I have are really theirs! Therefore, if you are buying advertising, make sure it is for my site, www.1CostaRicaLink.com and not for the look alike www.1DASHcostaricalink.com.

In closing, I apologize for having to draw this matter to the attention of potential visitors to Costa Rica, but I have to defend and protect my name. Please understand that Costa Ricans, almost all travel agencies, tour operators and hotels are honest, reliable, and absolutely not reflective of the problems you have read about here.

Very Best Regards,

Forrest Geiger
Owner / webmaster www.1costaricalink.com (without the DASH)

12 April 2010 - Forrest Found Innocent of False Claims Made by Malek

Click here to see earlier tripadvisor.com complaints against 1DASHcostaricalink.com

Travel Warnings Against 1DASHcostaricalink.com on WeLoveCostaRica.com

Click here for proof of earlier partnership with Malek, which he did not tell the prosecutor

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