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If you thought the most stressful part of buying eyewear was finding a pair that works with your bangs, then clearly you've never tangled with Vitaly Borker. The owner of designer eyewear site DecorMyEyes.com, who was recently featured in the Times for his unbelievably insane business practices, was arrested for cyber-stalking customers and selling counterfeit glasses in Brooklyn this week.
According to the Times, Borker's site (which is still live) acts as a middleman, selling labels like Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, and Oliver Peoples. What sets Borker apart is his approach: He uses online customer complaints from his internet and phone bullying to propel his business up towards the top of Google searches. The Times story describes how Borker harassed multiple customers who had sought refunds, going so far as to threaten one "with physical and sexual violence against herself and her unborn child."
Clarabelle Rodriguez, the subject of the Times story, was one of these hundreds of unfortunate customers. She'd placed an order for Lafont frames and contact lenses on DecorMyEyes.com but was rudely told to pick another brand, then overcharged by $125 for frames that appeared to be counterfeit. When she told Borker, who was using the pseudonym Tony Russo, that she would be disputing the charge her credit card company, he threatened her sexually, warning that he was just "one bridge over."
And, once Rodriguez actually did contact Citibank, he filed a lawsuit, sent her an e-mail with a picture of the front of her apartment building to make her aware that he knew where she lived, and called her cell phone over and over. All on the same day.
Tipped off by the Times article, the cops raided Borker's home yesterday and found counterfeit merchandise, guns, and—because this story clearly wasn't crazy enough—images of children that a prosecutor says "are consistent with child erotica." Borker has been charged with cyber-stalking, making interstate threats, mail fraud and wire fraud, which means DecorMyEyes probably shouldn't be guaranteeing delivery by Christmas any longer.
· A Bully Finds A Pulpit On The Web [The New York Times]
· DecorMyEyes boss busted by feds [NY Post]