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Federal Trade Commission Act
FTC Seeks Public Comment on Franchisors Exerting Control Over Franchisees and Workers
The FTC alleged that the defendants fraudulently marketed investment-related services that they claimed would enable consumers to make consistent profits and beat the market. Instead, the FTC alleges that consumers—many of them retirees, older adults, and immigrants—have lost at least $137 million to the scam in just the last three years. The defendants claimed in their pitches that consumers don’t need a lot of time, money, or experience, and that the global coronavirus pandemic represents a great time to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to learn their secret trading techniques, claiming in one ad that the pandemic “…might be the most exciting opportunity in decades!” The defendants also made claims like “Learn how you could DOUBLE or TRIPLE your account in One Week!” In March 2023, the FTC sent payments totaling more than $2.4 million to consumers in this case.
FTC Takes Action Against doTERRA Distributors for False COVID-19 Health Claims
FTC Returns More Than $2.9 Million To Consumers Harmed by Warrior Trading
Warrior Trading, Inc., FTC v.
The Federal Trade Commission is cracking down on the Warrior Trading day trading investment scheme for making misleading and unrealistic claims of big investment gains to consumers. The FTC alleges that Warrior Trading and its CEO, Ross Cameron, used those claims to convince consumers to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for a trading system that ultimately failed to pay off for most customers.
As a result of the FTC’s case, Warrior Trading will be required to pay $3 million to refund consumers and will be prohibited from making baseless claims about the potential for consumers to earn money using their trading strategies.
The Federal Trade Commission is sending payments totaling more than $2.9 million to 20,402 people who paid thousands of dollars for Warrior Trading’s investment programs. The company made misleading and unrealistic claims to sell a day trading “system” that failed to pay off for most customers.
Square One Development Group Inc., et al., U.S. and State of Wisconsin v.
The U.S. Department of Justice, on behalf of the Federal Trade Commission, and the Wisconsin Attorney General, filed suit against Consumer Law Protection and related companies, along with their owners and operators, Christopher Carroll, George Reed, Louann Reed, Scott Jackson, and Eduardo Balderas for scamming consumers—mostly older adults—out of more than $90 million in a massive timeshare exit scam.
Walmart, FTC v.
The Federal Trade Commission today sued Walmart for allowing its money transfer services to be used by fraudsters, who fleeced consumers out of hundreds of millions of dollars. In its lawsuit, the FTC alleges that for years, the company turned a blind eye while scammers took advantage of its failure to properly secure the money transfer services offered at Walmart stores. The company did not properly train its employees, failed to warn customers, and used procedures that allowed fraudsters to cash out at its stores, according to the FTC’s complaint. The FTC is asking the court to order Walmart to return money to consumers and to impose civil penalties for Walmart’s violations.
Federal Trade Commission Returns More Than $542,000 To Consumers Harmed by Bogus Money-Making Scheme Digital Income System
FTC Acts to Shut Down ‘The Credit Game’ for Running a Bogus Credit Repair Scheme that Fleeced Consumers
Federal Trade Commission Returns More Than $149 Million To Consumers Harmed by AdvoCare Pyramid Scheme
Jason Cardiff (Redwood Scientific Technologies, Inc.)
The FTC’s October 2018 complaint against Redwood Scientific charged the defendants with a scheme that used illegal robocalls to deceptively market dissolvable oral film strips as effective smoking cessation, weight-loss, and sexual-performance aids. Announced in June 2019 as part of a crackdown on illegal robocalls against operations around the country responsible for more than one billion calls, an initial settlement resolved the FTC’s charges against one defendant in the Redwood Scientific case, Danielle Cadiz. The order permanently banned Cadiz from all robocall activities, including ringless voicemails, and imposes a judgment of $18.2 million against Cadiz. In March 2022, the FTC announced the final court orders against all remaining defendants.
Remarks of Chair Lina M. Khan Regarding the Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Earnings Claims
The operators of a massive real estate investment coaching scheme face permanent bans and will pay approximately $12 million for consumer redress as part of a settlement in a lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission and the Utah Department of Commerce Division of Consumer Protection (UDCP).
The FTC and UDCP alleged that Zurixx, LLC, its owners Cristopher Cannon, James Carlson, and Jeffrey Spangler, and a number of associated companies operated a real estate investment coaching scheme that sold live seminars and telephone coaching using false earnings claims that convinced tens of thousands of consumers to pay them thousands or tens of thousands of dollars.
BurgerIM, U.S. v.
The Federal Trade Commission has filed suit against fast-food chain Burgerim, accusing the chain and its owner, Oren Loni, of enticing more than 1,500 consumers to purchase franchises using false promises while withholding information required by the Franchise Rule.
In a complaint filed on the FTC’s behalf by the Department of Justice, the FTC alleges that Burgerim and Loni recruited potential franchisees by pitching the opportunity as “a business in a box,” that required little to no business experience, downplaying the complexity of owning and operating a restaurant. According to the complaint, many consumers paid Burgerim between $50,000 and $70,000 in franchise fees, and the company targeted veterans with discount programs to lure them into the business. The complaint also alleges that although BurgerIM pocketed tens of millions of dollars in such fees, the majority of the people who paid them were never able to open restaurants.
FTC Sues Burger Franchise Company That Targets Veterans and Others With False Promises and Misleading Documents
Apply Knowledge, LLC
The Federal Trade Commission is returning an additional $25 million to consumers who lost money to a business coaching scheme that used the names Coaching Department and Apply Knowledge, among others. These refunds are the result of the FTC’s settlements with the scheme’s ringleaders, the companies through which the scheme operated, and a payment processor who helped facilitate the scheme.
FTC Files Amicus Brief in Patel, v. 7-Eleven, Inc.
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