Oxebridge has confirmed that at least one recipient of ARM 9009 certifications underwent an audit by self-accredited registrar Guberman PMC LLC (G-PMC) without ever having received a copy of the standard. ARM 9009 marketing materials published by the American Board of Accredited Certifications, “due to the sensitivity [sic] nature of products produced and in compliance [sic] with all state, federal, government(S) [sic] requirements. [sic] ARM-9009:2013 will not be a public domain document.”
Daryl Guberman, the founder of G-PMC, is also listed as “Senior Consultant” for ABAC, making certifications issued by G-PMC self-accredited, in violation of ISO 17021 international rules on accreditation.
One body armor manufacturer reported to Oxebridge that they did not receive a copy of ARM 9009 because a representative of G-PMC told them it “was too new” and would be developed based on the client’s internal procedures and standards, after the audit was completed. To date, this manufacturer has not received a copy of the ARM 9009 standard, despite being certified to it.
Another G-PMC client that supports firearm manufacturing indicated that they had to request the standard multiple times before being given a copy, but that G-PMC was fully prepared to provide a certificate without ever sending it. That source indicated that the ARM 9009 standard he received did not appear to include any specific requirements for gun or body armor manufacturing, but that it “reincorporated MIL-Q-9858 and MIL-I-45208 into ISO 9001.” If true, this would contradict G-PMC marketing which states, “ARM 9009:2013 system accreditation is based on highly specialized standards that have been universally accepted by manufacturers of firearms.”
Two other clients contacted refused to answer if they had ever received the standard.
G-PMC is marketing other standards, none of which Oxebridge could obtain evidence of having been written. These include CAN 9009 for medical marijuana, MWOB 9009 for Minority Woman Owned Businesses and Kosher 9009 for Kosher food certification.G-PMC marketing insists the standards cannot be released, and yet are “mandatory” for the given industries. In reality, none of the standards are mandatory.
Normally, companies achieve management system certification after they have implemented the requirements of a standard, which presumes they have an actual copy of the standard to reference. It is unclear how conformity to a standard could be assessed if the client never had a copy of the standard to read.
The Certificate Mill Problem
Unaccredited and self-accredited registrars such as G-PMC have been derided as “certificate mills” for their willingness to certify any scheme, without following international rules of accreditation. These rules ensure that a final certification decision is objective and free of conflicts of interest, and require the consulting body, certification body and accreditation body to be unrelated, without any shared management. In the case of Daryl Guberman, his companies offer all three services simultaneously. In addition, Mr. Guberman claims to be able to consult and/or certify over 20 disparate products and systems, including implantable medical devices, food certification, aircraft manufacturing, nuclear missile construction and medical marijuana.
The name “certificate mill” is derived from the term “diploma mill,” used for companies and persons who issue educational degrees without oversight or accreditation.
Certificate mills are criticized for offering certification to any organization, regardless of the maturity or state of their management system, and this latest revelation would support that G-PMC engages in this behavior. Earlier this year, Oxebridge conducted a sting operation that offered registrars the chance to certify a fictional company that alleged to manufacture cement life vests designed to kill the wearer; of the CBs contacted, only the unaccredited certificate mills agreed to provide the certificate, even after seeing test data that measured product performance in fatalities. Daryl Guberman was one of those that agreed to provide the certificate, agreeing to do so without an on-site audit.
One of the accreditations claimed by G-PMC is that of Industrial Leaders Group (ILG), for which Daryl Guberman is also a manager. ILG was founded by Don LaBelle, and operated a number of web directories for which companies could pay to be listed, in an early internet version of the “Who’s Who” scams. According to the ILG official release: [ILG] publishes a number of on-line industrial supply directories, industrial auctions and B2B marketplaces.” Despite this documented history, the G-PMC website now claims “for nearly a decade ILG has been providing standards for the Medical and Legalized Recreational Marijuana industry.” There is no evidence that Don LaBelle nor ILG did any work related to standards prior to working with Daryl Guberman in 2012.
Oxebridge is working with law enforcement in three states to determine if the claims made by Daryl Guberman and Don LaBelle go beyond exaggeration, and constitute criminal fraud.