UPDATE 3: bob_mcbob correctly points out on reddit: The Kickstarter backer list has an extremely conspicuous string of almost 200 people with Chinese names who have no profile information and have never backed another project. That’s about $70,000 of their funding and helped fuel the initial interest in the campaign.
UPDATE 2: Nelson and Benson are allegedly friends with the founders of Ignite Mobile (TapZilla & AppRebates) which inflate iOS appstore rankings by getting people to purchase apps and then refunding with cash. Seems like this was the inspiration for Arist asking people to pay with credit cards to fudge the numbers, and refunding with cash.
UPDATE 1: The following bombshell video at the Arist launch shows Benson at 0:09-0:12 thanking the audience for taking the time to queue up and use their credit cards to “pledge” for “something.” It supports the allegation that they artificially inflated pledge number by using the launch and then issuing refunds.
The Arist launch was allegedly attended by over 300 people in Hong Kong. Attendees of the party have informed that Arist asked everyone to contribute and then later refunded them. Seems like this was used to juice the initial amount of Kickstarter backers. Early backers on Kickstarter are all people with just 1 backing – Arist. See photos and discussion after the break.