As you know there is some controversy about Tommy Gonzalez’ pay raise. As I was preparing for tomorrow’s blog post by doing some last minute research when I came across a website with Tommy Gonzalez’ picture on it that obviously does not belong there. Upon landing on it my first reaction was, as Landon is fond of exclaiming, what ‘da!

Look at the screen shot below and you’ll quickly see what I’m talking about.


Obviously, it is a picture of Tommy Gonzalez that was misappropriated by Atrium & Associates LLC, a Delaware company that represents that they operate in Spain, the United Kingdom and New Zealand. They call themselves a management company. However, from the little research I conducted via the Internet, Atrium & Associates is likely a fraudulent company engaging in frauds.

Here is a detail shot for a closer look.


Yes, I realize that I am making a strong statement that could possibly land me in some legal jeopardy but the information I know, at this moment, strongly suggests to me that their operations are nefarious.

First is, of course, the misuse of Tommy Gonzalez’ picture. For those readers not familiar with El Paso politics, Tommy Gonzalez is the city manager for El Paso, Texas. He is not Bernard Johnson, Group Executive Director of Atrium & Associates.

The second piece of evidence is their obvious answering service that is nothing more than a recorder asking callers to leave their information for a call back. I called to see if I could speak to “Bernard Johnson.” Obviously, I didn’t get anywhere. Here is a recording of the answering machine that answered my call.

It looks to me like there is one person behind the whole make believe company.

Then there is the example of the Nigerian scam email that was sent using the domain name of the company.


As if none of that was enough proof, there is the statement by US Senator Carl Levin before the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations on Failure to Identify Company Owners Impedes Law Enforcement he made on November 14, 2006. As part of the record, Levin submitted Atrium Incorporators as an example of services that create companies that hide the identity of the owners.

It’s likely that only one individual will be contemplating a lawsuit for fraud and that would be Tommy Gonzalez for the misuse of his picture by Atrium Incorporators. The individual behind Atrium would have to come out of hiding in order to sue me for calling them a fraud.

By the way, I sent Tommy Gonzalez, through Juliet Lozano, an email letting him know about the misuse of his image.

In the meantime, enjoy this little moment of levity before I get to my next blog post about the raise city council gave Tommy Gonzalez in tomorrow’s edition.

Martin Paredes

Martín Paredes is a Mexican immigrant who built his business on the U.S.-Mexican border. As an immigrant, Martín brings the perspective of someone who sees México as a native through the experience...