Cautionary tales - two people who signed up
'I received a telephone call on June 22 from an Easyfit telephone salesperson who said the company was recruiting people to be beauty ambassadors. The caller said the centre would offer a free slimming programme and I would become a beauty ambassador and get paid for it.'
She was told she had to pay HK$24,800 as a bond to ensure she would follow instructions and maintain a target weight. If she lost more weight, it would be refunded. 'They kept asking if I had a credit card and already had a contract prepared for me.'
She signed the contract and took out her credit card to pay. 'Once I signed, the woman grabbed the contract and refused to give it back.' The woman ran away and she followed her to another floor where she ended up grappling with seven or eight staff. She called police. A staff member at last agreed to give her a copy of the contract on condition she did not reveal its terms to anyone. She did not agree and left with police.
Easyfit public relations manager Kitty Mak said: 'If our staff really had attacked her, they would have been arrested. Our company has 20 years' experience in offering slimming services. We always give a copy of a signed contract to our clients.'
Police confirmed they were called to a beauty centre in Cameron Road on July 22 where a woman had signed a contract which she later did not agree with.
'I got a call from a telephone saleswoman telling me a beauty centre was recruiting people to become beauty ambassadors. The person said the centre offered free programmes that would shape my body even better. If I successfully trimmed my body, I would be selected as a beauty ambassador and get paid for it.
'The saleslady called me many times. I was touched by her sincerity and agreed to meet the centre staff. When I went there they measured my weight and height and said my metabolic rate was lower than normal and I needed to lose 20 pounds.
'Then they kept urging me to sign a HK$30,000 contract for a series of treatments. I found it fishy so I said I only had a few hundred dollars and they took the cash. Then they referred a loan company to me and said I could borrow from the company and it was all interest-free. I signed the contract and a loan application form, because I did want a better body shape. But I thought about it more when I got home and did a search on the Net. I found many people said this was a dirty tactic this centre employed. I regretted my decision and called the centre to cancel, but they refused and said the paper I signed had been referred to legal consultants. But I insisted I wanted to cancel.
'The centre gave me a call a few days before this press conference and asked me to go there so that they could help me cancel the contract I signed.'