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Patriots fan takes down a multi-billion dollar fake debt scam

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This is a crazy story.

Carolina Panthers v New England Patriots Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Sometimes we just have to highlight the fans of the New England Patriots because oh my goodness this is a ridiculous story. Bloomberg published an article about the endeavors of Andrew Therrien, a Patriots fan that took down a multi-billion dollar fake scam empire.

The story begins with Therrien, his wife, and grandparents receiving threats about failing to pay back a loan that Therrien did not take out, and in his quest to find out the origin of the fake loan, Therrien unraveled enough thread to pull apart the entire operation.

“Sometimes, Therrien would make a small payment on the fake debt, then check bank records to see where it went,” author Zeke Faux writes. “He found people with convictions for counterfeiting, stock fraud, drug dealing, and child molestation. He started a spreadsheet, Scums.xlsx, to keep track. On weekends he’d harangue them from his couch while watching New England Patriots games. He used persuasion techniques he’d learned selling copiers, some drawn from a book called Getting Into Your Customer’s Head. On the phone, Therrien is a savant. He has an instinct for when to be a friend—one gruff payday lender tells me, sheepishly, that he simply doesn’t know why he speaks with Therrien so frequently—and when to be a bully.”

Therrien dug so deep into the story that he found the eventual kingpin and brought a case to the FBI and FTC. He acted like Liam Neeson’s character from Taken, finding anyone tangentially related to his targets to dig up information that could get him closer to toppling the structure. “Therrien acknowledges that sometimes he went too far,” Faux notes.

To add to the drama, the fake loan kingpin was only forced to pay a fine, setting up a likely sequel in 2019, probably.

I don’t even know where to go with this story. Therrien was a Patriots fan that toppled a fake loan organization that was based in Buffalo, but whose owner was based in Kansas City. Therrien started his investigation days after the Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX and it was like he just went to town on the cities with teams that beat the Patriots multiple times over the past few years.

I don’t recommend anyone go all vigilante on loan sharks and to let the authorities take care of these criminals, but wow. Just. Wow.