After tens of thousands of dollars in hand-outs received in endless campaigns to fund a purported movie project and even more given to bail him out of evictions, emergencies and every day life’s financial incidentals and hurdles, Mark Bunker filed for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in a Florida court in February 2018 citing at least two credit card lawsuits and over $50,000 in consumer debts he’d amassed during the preceding couple years. He claimed he had no securities to cover the debts, no substantial assets and nothing to account for his spending. As with the almost decade’s long record of asking others to support him, he was now asking the Court to cover him and erase most of the debt.
In his application, he swore under the penalty of perjury that his statements in the filing were true and correct.
“I have examined this petition, and I declare under penalty of perjury that the information provided is true and correct.”
In Part 4 of the filing, Bunker claimed he did not have any other financial assets.
Such assets would have included, for example, intellectual property. Yet between September 2010 and November 2015, he ran a total of fourteen IndieGoGo fundraisers and one GoFundMe campaign, netting just under $95,000 to fund a movie project. If that movie was being made, or was about ready to be presented in the spring of 2012 (as he claimed in January 2012) or by May 2016 (as he claimed in November 2015), the product would have been what the industry (and the courts) call “intellectual property”. Otherwise, where did the $95K go?
On page 34 of the filing, “Sources of Income”, it asks for employment income received in the years 2016 and 2017 as well as any other income received during this time. Bunker replied “No”, stating he hadn’t received anything else.
“Did you receive any other income during this year or the two previous calendar years? – ‘No'”
However, during that timeframe, Bunker did receive other income. In 2016 and 2017, he solicited donations through four separate GoFundMe campaigns which netted him $16,435 (minus fees) in cash gifts. The application noted to “include income regardless of whether that income is taxable” and gave examples of “other income” such as gambling or lottery winnings, pensions, Social Security, etc. It would seem that GoFundMe largesse is not that different than lottery winnings. Why didn’t he report it? And why did he list medical bills in his bankruptcy when he ostensibly collected those from one of his GoFundMe campaigns?