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FTC pursues telemarketers making illegal 'robocalls' to consumers on Do Not Call list

Consumer Reports News: December 19, 2011 02:53 PM

The Federal Trade Commission announced today it is filing legal action against several telemarketing firms for making pre-recorded sales pitches to phone numbers registered on the U.S. National Do Not Call list and disguising the Caller ID of such "robocalls" with inaccurate names.

In papers filed with the Department of Justice today, the FTC alleges that a Californian resident, Roy M. Cox, Jr., made automated sales calls—pitching credit card debt reduction programs, extended car warranties, and home security systems—using several companies based in Argentina, Hungry Hungary, Panama and the Republic of Seychelles. The calls, made on behalf of clients, violated the U.S.'s Telemarketing Sales Rule by disguising the Caller ID of such automated sales pitches with inaccurate names such as "card services" or "private office."

The FTC complaint also alleges that Cox knew, or "consciously avoided knowing," that these robocalls were being made to numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry. Making such automated, pre-recorded sales calls to consumers without their written consent violates another FTC rule, the agency said in its release today.

The legal complaint against Cox and his co-defendants—Castle Rock Capital Management Inc., Castle Rock Capital Management S.A., Capital Solutions Group S.A., Transfers Argentina S.A., Public Service, and Marketing Strategy Group—were filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California on Dec. 12, 2011. That court will hear the case and determine if Cox has indeed violated the FTCs telemarketing regulations.

FTC Charges Telemarketers with Illegal Robocalling [FTC]

Paul Eng

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