WASHINGTON (9/25/14)--Debt collection practices in which fictitious company names were used to threaten consumers into paying debts they may not have owed have been stopped by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Pinnacle Payment Services, LLC has settled with the FTC and is the subject of a default judgment by the court, barring its principals from debt collection activities.
According to an FTC complaint filed in 2013, Pinnacle defendants used fictitious business names that implied an affiliation with a law firm or a law enforcement agency. Using robocalls and voice messages that threatened legal action and arrest, the defendants collected millions of dollars in payment for debts many of the consumers contacted did not owe.
The illegal practices generated nearly 3,000 complaints to the FTC's Consumer Sentinel database, according to the commission.
The settlements require defendants Dorian Wills, Lisa Jeter, Nichole Anderson, Hope Wilson and Angela Triplett Tobias Boyland, jointly and severally, to pay judgments of $9,384,628, which represents the total consumer injury caused by their allegedly illegal conduct. Defendant Demarra Massey includes a judgment of $1,558,657, which reflects the consumer injury caused during her tenure with the operation, according to the FTC.
Under the settlements, the monetary judgments will be partially suspended due to the defendants' inability to pay.
Use the resource link below for more information about individual defendants, as well as the corporate defendants.