TikTok videos suggest serious crimes, and people actually believe them. The business owner said the allegations were hurting his bottom line.
HOUSTON – A pair of TikTok Videos claim that a party supply company in Sugar Land may be trafficking children by selling them on Amazon. It sounds incredible, but nonetheless, the videos have been viewed millions of times.
KHOU 11 also took a tour of the warehouse to see for ourselves.
Ali Momin is the CEO of Ionized LLC. Party vendor Sugar Land has been selling things like glow sticks, beads, and sequined hats for over a decade. A few weeks ago that all changed.
“Something we didn’t even know how to react to because it’s so blatant and outrageous,” Momin said.
From one of the videos posted on TIC Tac, a man suggests that the company may be behaving illegally.
“Amazon could be involved in the trafficking,” the man said in the video. “Take a look at this video, tell me what you think. “
The short video has been viewed millions of times and claims that the party hats listed for sale on Ionized LLC’s Amazon seller page are so expensive that something else has to happen.
“These ridiculous prices for these basic hats are exactly why some people think an illegal undercover business is happening right here on Amazon,” the man said in the video.
It also highlights the age section of the posts for sale.
“It says three months and more,” the man said in the video. “This one says five years and more.”
When KHOU 11 visited the facility last week, we saw a lot of new stuff, a lot of boxes and a few workers. But we didn’t see any children. And we haven’t seen anything else that might lead a reasonable person to think that the shipments leaving the warehouse on Amazon trucks were anything suspicious.
“It’s a devastating blow,” Momin said.
He said the videos caused serious damage to his business.
“The allegations you make affect real people,” Momin said. “The allegations affect our employees and our business. “
He said the more people watched the videos, the more the harassment intensified. The company has received countless calls and emails, slanderous messages on their Amazon seller page, and even calls to 911.
Sugar Land police responded to the case twice after anonymous callers told police it was a hub for human trafficking, according to an SLPD report. An officer who searched the warehouse “saw nothing suspicious”.
A spokesperson for the police department said the case was closed when officers determined “no crime had been committed, so there was no need to further investigate.”
But the worst didn’t come until early this month, when businesses received a notification from Amazon. The seller’s account of Ionized LLC was closed by Amazon without explanation.
“In Amazon sales, we could be losing $ 15,000 a day right now,” Momin said.
In an email response, an Amazon spokesperson said she could not tell KHOU 11 why the Ionized LLC account was closed, but wrote: “What can I tell you, is that it was not related to the video of the conspiracy that you mentioned “.
She said the company’s account has been reactivated, but according to Momin, the account is still closed.
Momin said Amazon also won’t explain to him why he chose to close the company’s seller’s account.
The Amazon spokesperson did not respond to a follow-up email from KHOU 11 regarding the account status before Tuesday night’s broadcast.
“I certainly don’t want to see those hats again,” Momin said. “It’s not worth the headache.”
Does the local business operate a child trafficking network through Amazon?
The suggestions made in the TikTok conspiracy video are false.