After reporting on a dodgy cancer treatment scheme being operated from Panama by arms salesman Ruben Tribaldos III and porn producer Fred Salaff, we looked a little deeper into the business ventures of these two gentlemen and their claims.
THE CLINIC THAT DOESN'T EXIST
First, it was said by Salaff as well as Tribaldos that a clinic in Panama they advertised on their now defunct website did in fact not exist, and the text on the site was there due to an oversight. They had planned to start a clinic, but there never was a clinic, as no patients expressed their desire to come to Panama. The text, written by Escorpion Azul's president Mark Melkonian, just a sort of stayed there, or so their story went.
But that's false. They lied about this clinic deliberately and not just when the first website was launched years ago. In a press release in Spanish dated April 10th of this year, Escorpion Azul S.A. announces the opening of a clinic in Panama:
"Es, por supuesto, ilegal que un ciudadano común de los EE.UU. viaje a Cuba, aun para recibir tratamientos médicos. Escorpión Azul, S.A. ha invertido en el progreso del trabajo de Labiofam y ha abierto una clínica en la ciudad de Panamá para el tratamiento de los pacientes de cáncer que desean utilizar Escozul. Puesto que Panamá es fácilmente accesible a los ciudadanos de los EE.UU., así como también para otros pacientes internacionales, la clínica de Escorpión Azul se convierte en una alternativa viable a viajar a Cuba. Escorpión Azul, S.A. puede también enviar con seguridad Escozul por mensajero dondequiera en el mundo."
(Translated: "It is of course illegal for a common citizen of the USA to travel to Cuba, even if that is to receive cancer treatment. Escorpion Azul S.A. has invested in Labiofam's research and has opened a clinic in Panama City for the treatment of cancer patients wishing to use Escozul. Given the fact that Panama is easy accessible for US citizens as well as other international patients, the clinic of Escorpion Azul will be a viable alternative to traveling to Cuba. Escorpiuon Azul, S.A. can also securely send Escozul by messenger to those who wish to use it anywhere in the world.")
We also found Mr. Tribaldos on yet another cancer treatment website, "Cancer Hope Research". At that site Mr. Tribaldos is presented as a member of the medical staff:
"Attending physicians, Dr. Saldana, MD., Dr. Tribaldos, MD., researcher Ruben Tribaldos, and a full time bi-lingual staff are specially trained in all areas of cancer treatments."
The website purports to have a clinic as well, in Cuba this time. Presumably we are to believe that the Panamanian Dr. Saldana and Dr. Tribaldos (whom we think is Dr. Roberto Tribaldos, who is not a cancer specialist but a plastic surgeon) as well as "medical researcher" Ruben Tribaldos will travel to Cuba each time a patient needs treatment?
This is yet another travesty of the truth. Mr. Ruben Tribaldos, who dabbled in porno but whose principal business is running a gun shop in Panama City, is not a medical researcher and is certainly not "specially trained in all areas of cancer treatment." The same goes for Dr. Saldana, who is just a general practitioner specializing in family health, and we can't find a "Dr. Tribaldos" who is a cancer expert either. Apparently, misrepresenting or simply inventing medical credentials is something that runs in the Tribaldos family.
TEAK PLANTATIONS AND SAW MILLS THAT DON'T EXIST
A little more investigating revealed yet another interesting business venture of Ruben Tribaldos and porn producer Fred Salaff: teak wood. As much as you want.
"Our company is offering cut plantation Teak, we own big Plantation Farms in Panama, Republic of Panama. 35 years and older trees. We also own a sawmill. We can supply your needs for sawn Teak to your specifications, and we can negotiate good prices in order to accommodate your needs," writes Ruben Tribaldos on the website of the Global Wood Trade Network, signing as the CEO of a company called "Motraco S.A.".
Then there is a link to the website of Motraco. It has only one page, this time not offering 35 year old teak, but asking for plywood, which allegedly they were planning to sell to Cuba after Hurricane Ivan had hit the island nation, thus preying on hurricane victims instead of desperate cancer patients for a change. And what's the contact listed for Motraco? The email address of none other than Fred Salaff.
Needless to say, of course, that Motraco S.A. does not own any teak farms nor a sawmill. The only thing Salaff and Tribaldos and their fellow charlatans seem to really own is a dream factory in lala-land.