Update: Calgary Barb Wire Sabotage Turns out to be Fraud

Jul 22, 2017 at 11:43
by Lee Lau  
A special tip of the hat is due to the riders from Pinkbike forum "Trail Conditions for Calgarians" who supplied a lot of the information refuting the claims of Stelios Psaroudakis in the initial claims of barb wire sabotage resulting in injuring on Calgary's Bragg Creek trails, originally reported by Pinkbike and other news media. A summary of the developments is that it's almost certain that Stelios is not even a cyclist; that he did not even own the bike which was purported to be stolen and that the entire thing was a con-job designed to elicit community support and prime a GoFundMe to replace a bike which he never proved to own.

Some developments are as follows:
1. GoFundMe pulled Stelios's attempt to prime a $8,000 campaign to replace the (non-existent) stolen bike and has imposed a ban on him starting campaigns.
2. The RCMP issued an arrest warrant for Stelios in connection with his dubious claims to have run into barbed wire strung across a Bragg Creek trail.

An anonymous source contacted Pinkbike to report that Stelios was riding an electric trike on private property when he lost control of the trike and ran into a fence thus injuring his neck. The source then conveyed the report to the Cochrane RCMP detachment; the same detachment issuing the arrest warrant. Stelios has since deleted his Facebook account and his former number is now unlisted. Accordingly, attempts to reach him to obtain an explanation were unsuccessful.

Updated sources

CBC regarding the GoFundMe campaign.
Global News regarding the GoFundMe campaign.
CBC regarding the police charges.
Cochrane Eagle regarding the police charges
Global News regarding the police charges and Stelios's statement that this was a "white lie".

MENTIONS: @leelau

Must Read This Week


  • + 52
 There are a few names kicking around for a new trail. One is Barbed Liar or Go Fund me. Would be great to see this happen.
  • + 74
 I'm partial to "Go Fund Yourself"
  • + 17
 I like "Barbed Liar" but instead of naming a trail after him, couldn't someone just brand that on his forehead?
  • + 9
 Im in for "Barbed Liar"
  • + 3
 Gash for Cash ?
Severed Head ?
Mack and Stelios' Big Adventure?
  • + 4
 We are hoping the shitters after parking lot improvements at west Bragg is named the "stelios shitter"
  • + 1
 @mungbean: hahaha love it
  • + 23
 Cam McRae did a ton of work on this story. nsmb.com/articles/rcmp-statement-re-barbed-wire-claimant
  • + 2
 massive respect to Cam for the endless hours of work on this and many more.
  • + 10
 I guarantee this POS will make up a new Facebook account, and try to do a similar thing again. Perps do not just change their MO entirely after one good busting. Guys like this lie as easily as they breathe, and he thinks he's way smarter than everyone. He'll try to improve his approach, learn from his mistakes (the ones that got him caught, not the moral and legal errors), and come back with a whole new schtick. If he is luck to avoid jail time, he'll be convinced it was due to his brilliant acting. I hope he gets time. Hardened criminals will eat him for lunch.
  • + 10
 A large part of the reason for pushing to have this updated was to add to Google SEO for Stelios's name so his fraud would be recorded for posterity along with other articles. Perhaps he doesn't get time. But his days of infamy will be preserved and hopefully others will know what they're dealing with
  • + 2
 @leelau: maybe repost the guys pic too
  • + 1
 @BryceBorlick: that's not a bad idea. Will add them
  • + 12
 Ugh. I feel like an ass for defending that human garbage. Super, super lame.
  • + 18
 compassion isn't the sign of an ass. Don't beat yourself up over it.
  • + 11
 @jayacheees what @benhg said. He came across when I interviewed him as someone who really believed his own schtick ; quasi-delusional.

I'm relieved that no sabotage occurred
  • + 3
 @benhg: I did the same at the beginning.. Although I did think he was
embellishing when he said his 2008 stumpy was worth 8k..Not even then was it anywhere close.
  • + 9
 The investigating office did a lot of work tracking down the right people needed to get evidence for a charge. She did a great job.
  • + 6
 Stellianos Psaroudakis has actually tried scams like this before. He's now been arrested by the Cochrane RCMP, after turning himself in. He is a pretty repugnant person.

I personally am for "Barbed Liar".

Source: m.calgarysun.com/2017/07/21/man-charged-after-reporting-he-struck-barbed-wire-bike-was-stolen
  • + 7
 Him getting caught for fraud is all well and good, but the best thing to come out of this whole incident is the hilarious image of someone close-lining the sh*t out of themselves riding an electric trike!
  • + 4
 So basically the guy does something really stupid, then tries to cover it up with a really poorly thought out story. To this point, I can kind of understand; people try to pull that kind of stuff all the time.

But then proceeds to make the leap to profiting from it by preying on others peoples sympathy and playing it out as being the victim. There is a special place in hell for people like this.
  • + 2
 “I try to do something good and now everybody’s calling me a liar, calling me a fraudster. I’m none of those things, I just wanted to help.”

Once you meet enough fraudsters, you'll start to notice that it is never their fault - the scam is because of someone else (I found this amazing deal! I know someone who can guarantee a great return! I need help because someone did this bad thing to me!) and when caught it's never their fault, either.

Sad stuff.
  • + 4
 I found watching the whole storey unravel very entertaining. I think we should set up a gofundme for his legal defence (does not really need to go to legal fees) and put the money to trail maintenance. Barbed Lair has been my fave
  • + 3
 Kudos to those that looked at the facts and didn't just get swayed by the social justice bent of these types of stories. If people really do this stuff, they should be punished. Thankfully, if they lie about it happening, they get punished as well. Good job society.
  • + 5
 Please... please let there be someone with cell phone or GoPro footage of the actual incident. I would watch it 1000 times.
  • + 1
 I requested but there was none. The witnesses were too surprised
  • + 2
 Though I haven't seen them with my own eyes I have friends in the car club community that said he posted scams in those forums as well. Seems like fraud is nothing new to him.
  • + 2
 I looked in multiple Calgary/Edmonton/Alberta used car forums, on Craigslist and on other scam warning sites and could not find any mention of his name. Unfortunately, without the actual posted warning anything else was so much useless hearsay.

There was lots of second hand information reported - all of which was hearsay. But ultimately what brought the fraud charges was the direct incontrovertible eye-witness evidence from the people who reported the true circumstances of the incident (the electric trike) to the RCMP. Tip of the hat to them
  • + 2
 on the bright side, we can all appreciate the fact that we have good people in the MTB community that wanted to be sure all the other trails were safe!
  • + 4
 Ok hold on.... so the dog is OK right?
  • + 4
 I enjoy the word repugnant !
  • + 2
 So, what happens to the money that people sent to the gofundme campaign? (if there was any)
  • + 1
 Never disbursed or refunded according to gofundme
  • + 2
 Money was held and I believe recently confirmed to be refunded to the donors. Happy to hear all of that. Was fishy right from the start.
  • + 3
 this is actually pretty funny
  • + 1
 Just as bad as pretending to have cancer. There are some wonderful campaigns that help people and to make everyone think twice about giving in the future is shameful.
  • + 2
 This is all just ridiculous, where people like him wanted to get at and what they really get out of it ?
Depressing !
  • + 1
 NSMB has been doing some great reporting on this, including a follow up piece for the RCMP's statement.
  • + 2
 I vote for a trail in his honor called "Trike Moron"
  • + 2
 I vote "Go Fund Yourself" or "Chihuahua Backpack"
  • + 1
 Upvoted for being too decent of a person to even imagine someone being capable of doing something like that
  • + 1
 This guy got what he deserved. From day one I knew is was all fake. Kudos to the RCMP for all their detective work!
  • + 1
 Apparently you have to be Canadian to comment on this article...
  • + 1
 Someone threw off the all-Canadian streak, its Jamaican me crazy!
  • + 1
 "Mysterious Mack"
"Mack Attack"
  • + 1
 Hope he wasn't doing all this to buy a Specialized

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