Court Halts Collection of Allegedly Fake Payday Debts

Pinnacle Payment Services, LLC

For Release
October 24, 2013

At the request of the Federal Trade Commission, a U.S. district court has halted an operation based in Atlanta and Cleveland that allegedly used deceptive and threatening tactics to collect phantom payday loan “debts” that consumers either did not owe, or did not owe to the defendants.  The court order freezes the defendants’ assets to preserve the possibility of providing redress to consumers, and appoints a receiver.

According to the FTC, the defendants operated under a host of fictitious business names that implied an affiliation with a law firm or a law enforcement agency, such as Global Legal Services, Allied Litigation Group, United Judgment & Appeals, Dockets Liens & Seizures, and United Judgment Center.  Using robocalls and voice messages that threatened legal action and arrest unless consumers responded within a few days, the defendants have collected and processed millions of dollars in payment for phantom debts, according to the complaint.  Their practices have generated almost 3,000 complaints to the FTC’s Consumer Sentinel.

According to documents filed with the court, a typical message stated:  “[T]his is the Civil Investigations Unit.  We are contacting you in regards to a complaint being filed against you, pursuant to claim and affidavit number D00D-2932, where you have been named a respondent in a court action and must appear.  There is a contact number on file which you must call, 757-301-4745.  Please forward this information to your attorney in that the order to show cause contains a restraining order.  You or your attorney will have 24 to 48 hours to oppose this matter.”

Working out of offices in Cleveland and Atlanta, the defendants threatened consumers that if they did not pay, their bank accounts would be closed, their wages would be garnished, they would face felony fraud charges, they would have to appear in court thousands of miles from their homes, or they would be arrested at their workplace, according to documents filed with the court.  Many consumers ended up paying the defendants for debts they did not owe because they feared the threatened repercussions of failing to pay, believed the defendants were legitimate and collecting real debts, or simply wanted to stop the harassment, according to the complaint.

The FTC’s complaint names Lisa J. Jeter, Nichole C. Anderson, Hope V. Wilson, Angela J. Triplett, DeMarra J. Massey, and their companies Pinnacle Payment Services, LLC, Velocity Payment Solutions, LLC, Heritage Capital Services, LLC, Performance Payment Processing, LLC, Credit Source Plus, LLC (Ohio), Credit Source Plus, LLC (Georgia), Reliable Resolution, LLC, Premium Express Processing, LLC (Ohio), and Premium Express Processing, LLC (Atlanta).

This is the FTC’s fifth recent case involving allegedly fraudulent, online payday-loan-related operations.  Other cases include American Credit Crunchers, LLC, Broadway Global Master Inc., Pro Credit, and Vantage Funding.

The complaint charges the defendants with violating the FTC Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act by falsely telling consumers that:

  • they were delinquent on a payday loan or other debt that the defendants had the authority to collect;
  • they had the legal obligation to pay the defendants;
  • they would be arrested or imprisoned if they did not pay; and
  • the defendants had taken or would take legal action.

The complaint also charges that the defendants illegally called consumers at inconvenient
times or places, including at their workplaces, despite being asked to stop; disclosed supposed debts to family members, employers, and other third parties; harassed consumers with repeated calls; failed to disclose their identity as debt collectors; and failed to provide a required written notice telling consumers how to dispute the alleged debts.

For more consumer information on this topic, see Dealing with Debt.

The Commission vote authorizing the staff to file the complaint was 4-0.  The complaint and request for a temporary restraining order were filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division.  On October 24, 2013 the court granted the FTC’s request.

NOTE:  The Commission files a complaint when it has “reason to believe” that the law has been or is being violated and it appears to the Commission that a proceeding is in the public interest.  The case will be decided by the court.

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:
Betsy Lordan
Office of Public Affairs
202-326-3707

Ripoffreport.com Complaint

It is our deepest regret that ED Magedson founder of http://Ripoffreport.com Ripoff Report and THE EDITOR of the site has decided to aid those who seek to destroy scamFRAUDalert by providing them a platform for them to publish FALSE and misinformation or whatever nonsense they choose about scamFRAUDalert.

To our disbelief, these are the same group of individuals disseminating FALSE information about Ripoffreport.com – See Youtube Video and with whom Ripoffreport.com have had several lawsuits and court ordered judgments against. We have common enemies ED base on our mission as consumer advocates.

We are referring to the owner(s)/operator(s) of the sites below with whom ED Megadson has allowed to post whatever they choose about scamFRAUDalert which Mr. Megadson had denied posting such garbage in the past. Reason for ED change of heart, SFA refusal to retract Google DMCA replied response.

ED Magedson runs his website http://ripoffreport.com based on biases and enemy list. scamFRAUDalert were never an enemy of Mr. Magedson until we responded to ED DMCA Notice to Google.com. It is our belief that ED Megadson is a wacko eccentric individual.

  1. http://omegaenterprisesUSA.com
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  3. http://lawenforcementassociations.com
  4. http://complaintsboard.com
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  8. http://scaminformer.com aka http://scamexposure.com
  9. http://jailarrest.com
  10. http://wikiwarnings.com
  11. http://warning-notice.com
  12. http://Predatorswatch.com
  13. http://Potentialpredators.com
  14. http://MikeKingUSA.com
  15. http://wikiprobe.org

We at scamFRAUDalert do NOT encourage, engage in or condor such behavior. We POLICE our sites with the highest level of integrity. This is our trademark and we pride our work on this.

From what we’ve seen and have concluded is that ED Magedson d/b/a Ripoffreport.com is attempting to gain competitive advantage by allowing those who seek to destroy scamFRAUDalert to post whatever they want including OUR family member names purchased online. Where do you draw the line ED?

Ripoffreport now include in most subject lines and subject titles” the words “scam” or “fraud.” Not every consumer GRIPE is a FRAUD Mr. Magedson. You need to STOP categorizing consumer complaints as FRAUD.

We too are not perfect. Best of luck ED as we compete going forward and seek a resolution. Simply ED, delete or remove those postings and we would do the same.

ED Magedson

EDitor@RipoffReport.com

ED Magedson SAYS

We are not lawyers.

We are not a collection agency.

We are Consumer Advocates.

…the victims’ advocate

WE are Civil and Human Rights Activists

We are a Nationwide Consumer Reporting News Agency

…by consumers, for consumers

Ripoff Report

PO Box 310,

Tempe, Arizona, 85280

602-359-4357

Remember…

Don’t let them get away with it!

Make sure they make the Ripoff Report!

BBB – Customer Complaints Summary Read complaint details
49 complaints closed with BBB in last 3 years | 26 closed in last 12 months
Complaint Type Total Closed Complaints
Advertising/Sales Issues 16
Billing/Collection Issues 3
Delivery Issues 0
Guarantee/Warranty Issues 0
Problems with Product/Service 30
Total Closed Complaints 49

Additional Complaint Information

Recently, Better Business Bureau has received a pattern of complaints for this company that allege billing, advertising, service, repair, contract, and customer service issues. Complaints allege this business allows individuals to file reports about businesses and individuals that consumers may state are not true on the company’s website: http://www.ripoffreport.com. Some complainants report that when they contact the company regarding the removal of the reports, the business may inform the complainant that they must pay a fee (usually $2,000), to have the report removed and/or arbitrated.

Some complainants state that their personal information, such as an address or a phone number, may be listed in the report. Additionally, some complainants allege an overall difficulty reaching the company when problems arise. At this time, a representative from Ripoff Report has indicated to BBB that the company will not work to resolve customer disputes through BBB.

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