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L0RDZ (84.07)

Phantom Indian debt collector alert, you're going to jail.

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June 08, 2012 – Comments (0) | RELATED TICKERS: AM.DL2 , C , S

http://gma.yahoo.com/phantom-debt-collectors-india-harass-americans-demand-money-221109715--abc-news-topstories.html

Anyone  remember  calling  for  computer  support   and speaking to someone  from India.

Now  imagine them calling you and making  demands  or else.

Well it seems  they  have  branched out  into  other nefarious activities, like  strong-arming  money out of the weak and scared  persons in the USA.

Imagine  in an heavily accented voice,  demands  of  payment  or else someone is gonna come arrest you !!!

The calls are part of a massive scam, one that appears to target struggling Americans -- especially those who have gone online to apply for payday loans. Armed with personal information from those pilfered applications, the threatening callers, who claim to be debt collectors poised to initiate legal action, have managed to pry loose millions of dollars from their victims -- even when the victims never owed money in the first place.

Working through call centers in India, the commission estimates that the criminals have dialed at least 2.5 million calls, persuading already cash-strapped victims to send them more than $5 million. Some have reported receiving dozens of calls per hour. They are victims like Cindy Gervais, of New Orleans, who went online for a quick loan when her husband's car was hit by a driver who didn't have insurance.

Even though she paid the loan off, the so-called "phantom" debt collectors with Indian accents began calling to say she still owed money.

"He more or less told me that if I didn't pay, they were going to have someone on my doorstep to arrest me," she told ABC News. "And that they were going to contact my place of business, and tell them what kind of person I am."

At first, she said she resisted. Then the calls became more frequent, and started to ring on her cell phone, and at the grocery distribution company where she had worked for 27 years.

"I was more or less was in panic mode because he told me there would be someone before noon at my place of business to arrest me and take me to jail," she said tearfully. "So I agreed to pay him."

After receiving scores of complaints, investigators with the FTC said they began tracking the calls, and following the payments. They alleged the payments led them to a California company run by an Indian-American named Kirit Patel, and that such scams would not be possible without American front men.

"I would say that all roads of this scam, or many of the roads of this scam, lead back to Mr. Patel," said the FTC's Leibowitz.

 

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