Defendant in FTC Landline Phone Cramming Case Settles Charges

For Release

One of the defendants behind a massive landline cramming operation that placed more than $70 million in unauthorized charges on consumers’ phone bills has agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges against him.

Nathan M. Sann, one of the defendants in the American eVoice, Ltd. case has agreed to settle the FTC’s charges related to his alleged participation in the scheme. In its complaint, the FTC alleged that the operation placed charges ranging from $9.95 to $24.95 per month on consumers’ landline phone bills for voicemail services they never signed up for and never even knew they had.  The case against the other entities and individuals involved in the scheme is on-going.

Under the terms of his settlement with the FTC, Sann will be banned from placing charges of any kind on consumers’ phone bills. In addition, he will be prohibited from billing consumers for any good or service without their authorization. Sann will also be required to destroy all personal information that he collected from consumers in connection with the cramming operation within 30 days.

The settlement contains a monetary judgment of more than $21 million, which represents the amount of consumer injury attributable to Sann during his involvement with the scam.  The judgment will be suspended due to Sann’s inability to pay upon his surrender of certain personal assets.  Under the terms of the settlement, if Sann has misrepresented his financial condition, the full judgment would become due.

The Commission vote approving the proposed stipulated order was 5-0. The FTC filed the proposed stipulated order in the U.S. District Court for the District of Montana, Missoula Division. It was entered by the court on Nov. 25, 2014.

NOTE: Stipulated orders have the force of law when approved and signed by the District Court judge.

The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC’s online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357). The FTC enters complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 2,000 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The FTC’s website provides free information on a variety of consumer topics. Like the FTC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and subscribe to press releases for the latest FTC news and resources.

Contact Information

MEDIA CONTACT:
Jay Mayfield
Office of Public Affairs
202-326-2181

STAFF CONTACT:
Richard McKewen
FTC Northwest Region
206-220-4595