Fake Debt Collector Calls - Know When to Hang Up
Fake calls from false debt collection agencies pressure consumers to pay debts they may not have or submit payment to the scammers instead of who they really owe the money to.
The United States District Court Eastern District Of California put a stop to alleged fake debt collector calls by Broadway Global Master Inc., In-Arabia Solutions, Inc., and Kirit Patel, as individual and officer of Broadway Global Master Inc. and In-Arabia Solutions, Inc.
The temporary restraining order follows a formal complaint filed by the Federal Trade Commission alleging violations of the FTC Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
This action comes just a month after the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois Eastern Division granted the FTC request for a temporary restraining order against American Credit Crunchers, LLC, Ebeeze, LLC, and Varang K. Thaker as individual and officer of the two companies.
According to the FTC, Broadway Global Master, In-Arabia Solutions, and Kirit Patel placed over 2.7 million calls to over 600,000 phone numbers nationwide. They allegedly collected in excess of $5.2 million from consumers. The court order issued temporarily stops illegal conduct and freezes the assets while the FTC moves ahead with the court proceedings and seeks refunds for consumers.
The charges against American Credit Crunchers, Ebeeze, LLC, and Varang K. Thaker are similar. The FTC alleges consumers received millions of collection calls from India since January 2010 and that the operation took in more than $5 million from victims.
These actions are part of the FTC's continued focus on eliminating scams that exploit consumers in financial trouble or worried about their finances. This puts many citizens at risk in these troubled monetary times.
These criminals often falsely claim to be law enforcement agents or to represent fake government agencies such as the "Federal Crime Unit of the Department of Justice." Many of the call originated from India by individuals working with and for the above named defendants.
According to documents submitted to the courts, one consumer was threatened her with having her children taken away if she did not pay. Another consumer told the FTC,
“The callers threatened me and claimed they would arrest me if I didn't pay them the alleged debt. One of the callers even contacted my neighbors and told me he was watching my house. The callers had a lot of . . . personal information about me, including my work address. One caller told me, 'We just saw you walk into your office building,' and then listed my office address. Another caller told me there were 55 warrants out for my arrest. Sometimes my caller ID would indicate that the call was from the FBI. Because the callers knew so much about me, I believed they were police officers or FBI agents. The calls scared me and I was often shaking when I hung up the phone."