BBB Issues Warning Against Darius 'Cooks' Williams, Celebrity Chef Accused Of Having Fraudulent Business Practices
"Respectfully, I don't care," Cooks said about the BBB warning.
May 23, 2022 at 4:06 pm
Darius “Cooks” Williams, a self-taught celebrity chef who has amassed a following online, has been accused of fraudulent business practices, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.
He has also been accused of delivering poor customer service and stealing recipe ideas for his cookbooks.
The Better Business Bureau recorded more than 70 complaints about Cooks and his company, DariusCooks, LLC, which sells cookbooks, apparel and accessories, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.
“He told me the post office hadn’t sent out the package yet,” Sherrica Blackmon of Minot, North Dakota, said, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.
Blackmon had ordered another cookbook from the celebrity chef when she received the first one without any incident.
“But when I called the post office they told me they hadn’t received the package yet,” she said. “All he did was print out a shipping label.”
Blackmon realized she was not alone in dealing with Williams’ alleged unprofessional business practices when she read through his social media accounts and discovered others with similar complaints.
He blocked her when she tried to notify him on social media about not receiving her order.
Months after she filed a complaint with the BBB, Blackmon had to dispute the charge with her bank for Williams to ship out the second cookbook that she ordered.
“Even with all the evidence surrounding him that numerous people are experiencing the same thing, there are still people that are defending him, upholding him and his trash behavior,” she said.
The BBB is now warning future customers from engaging in any business transactions with Williams.
“BBB advises consumers to use caution when doing business with DariusCooks, LLC,” the nonprofit organization said in a statement, warning others that past complaints went unanswered, Fox 5 Atlanta reports.
After being asked about the BBB warning, Williams told Fox 5, “Respectfully, I don’t care.”
Williams is also known to go live on social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. When critics of his work try to confront him online, Williams is accused of retaliating by posting their personal information, otherwise known as doxxing, to spur his followers to harass them.
Now, a woman is accusing Williams of having his followers call her and flood her message with hate.
“The person who called me and threatened me and my parents, she didn’t know us,” Melenese Ford said in a March interview, according to Fox 5. “She did it solely based on her … weird attachment to this man.”
She is seeking for Williams to pay her legal fees due to the temporary restraining order he filed against her.
Ford said she arrived at a Sandy Springs barbershop after Williams livestreamed from the building. When Williams left the establishment, he saw a T-shirt with words that read, “Forever Problem” left on his car.
Both Williams and Ford called the police.
“I had to have my depression and anxiety medication increased after this incident happened,” Williams said in court, according to Fox 5.
“He’s now in reasonable fear for his safety that this woman is following him,” Williams’ attorney, Robert Nothdurft, said in court, according to Fox 5.
A court hearing will determine if Williams is granted a permanent restraining order against Ford or if the proceedings will decide that Williams is the actual perpetrator of the harassment.
“The history, the trail that follows Mr. Williams is rife with lies, with fraud, with harassment, with bullying,” Ford’s attorney, Will Davis, argued to the judge, according to Fox 5. “He wants to get clicks. He loves attention. This group of women that follow him love the drama. And so does he.”
Davis asked Williams if he knew what trolling meant.
“Trolling is … making fun of someone or picking on someone,” Williams responded.
“And so you’re saying you do not troll people online?” Davis asked Williams.
“Not without reason,” he answered.
DariusCooks, LLC, was administratively dissolved in 2019 for “failing to file annual registration and/or failure to maintain a registered agent or registered office in this state,” according to the Georgia Secretary of State, Fox 5 reports.