A federal district court has temporarily halted an Orlando, Fla.-based operation for robocall campaigns dating to 2011. The campaigns tricked consumers into paying upfront fees for allegedly worthless credit card interest rate reduction programs, according to the Federal Trade Commission and Florida Attorney General’s office.

The court order stops the illegal calls, many of which targeted seniors and claimed to be from “credit card services” and “card member services.” 

Doing business as Payless Solutions, the defendants have been calling thousands of consumers nationwide – including many seniors – claiming that their program will save them at least $2,500 in a short period of time and will allow them to pay off their debts faster. After convincing consumers to provide their credit card information, the defendants then charged between $300 and $4,999 for their service. In some cases, they illegally charged consumers without their consent.

The list of defendants includes: 1) All Us Marketing LLC, f/k/a Payless Solutions LLC; 2) Global Marketing Enterprises Inc., f/k/a Pay Less Solutions Inc.; 3) Global One Financial Services LLC; 4) Your #1 Savings LLC; 4) Ovadaa LLC; 5) Royal Holdings Of America LLC; 6) Gary Rodriguez; 7) Marbel Rodriguez; 8) Carmen Williams; 9) Jonathan Paulino; 10) Fairiborz Fard; 11) Shirin Imani; and 13) Alex Serna.

The complaint also charges the defendants with making many calls to consumers whose phone numbers are on the FTC’s National Do Not Call Registry, and with a number of violations of the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule and Florida’s Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Act.“Working with the Florida Attorney General, we’re shutting down a scam that blasted robocalls to older people and offered bogus solutions to relieve credit card debt,” said Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.  “It’s illegal to sell products or services with out-of the-blue robocalls, and if you get one you can expect that the sales pitch is a lie, too.”

The joint agency complaint alleges that the defendants fail to provide consumers with the promised interest rate reductions or savings. Instead, some consumers receive a package of financial education information that they did not request or agree to pay for. In other cases, the defendants use consumers’ personal information to apply for new credit cards, presumably with low introductory interest rates, without consumers’ knowledge or consent.

“These scammers were making illegal robocalls to people nationwide, some of whom were seniors on fixed incomes. Too often the services promised were never provided, and consumers faced even more credit card debt through charges made without their consent,” said Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi. “My office, in partnership with the FTC, has shut down this illegal credit card interest rate reduction scam and brought those responsible under the control of a federal court receiver.”

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