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Travelers' update

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Consumer Affairs of Alberta has launched a probe into the dealings of Scott Bartlett's former company, Travelers' Best Friend. The investigation is looking to clear some of the confusion. Students, led by Amy Dickson and her friends, are still waiting on refunds from cancelled trips last summer.

Consumer Affairs, however, has located Bartlett and Alberta Government Services Senior Investigator Kate Diakow is now in contact with him and his lawyer. Dickson and her friends have also received an e-mail they believe was penned by Bartlett himself.

"Due to extreme personal issues, including the death of the main principal's father in May, then some other family members shortly thereafter, some of the work towards raising funds and determining refunds has been delayed," reads Bartlett's e-mail.

The statement also assures clients they will receive further correspondence regarding their refunds by Nov. 30, 2003.

The investigation continues in spite of this explanation, as Consumer Affairs explores the possibility of dirty business.

"I am awaiting information from [Travelers' Best Friend's] accountant in order to determine the timing events," commented Diakow. "This will help me decide if the Fair Trading Act has been violated or whether this was a business failure."

Diakow also explained that Bartlett is currently working on partial refunds, and has praised Bartlett's cooperation as of yet.

Bartlett promised full refunds by Sept. 20, 2003 to students after economic and international instability led to the cancellation of theirs and others' vacations. He was never heard from, his company shut down, and his whereabouts were left unknown to his panicked clients.

Attempts to contact Bartlett personally have been unsuccessful.

If you've had problems with Travelers' Best Friend, you may contact Dickson by e-mail at binscrewedbytbf@hotmail.com.

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