Wednesday, November 25, 2015

FTC Obtains Contempt Ruling Against ‘Yellow Pages’ Scam

At the Federal Trade Commission’s request, a federal court has banned Robert Ray Law and his company, CPU Service Incorporated (CPU) from sending unsolicited direct mail to advertise or promote goods or services, imposed a judgment of almost $400,000, and required them to immediately pay $45,000.

In July 2014, the FTC charged Law and Your Yellow Book Inc. (YYB) with using bogus invoices to trick small businesses, doctors’ offices, retirement homes, and religious schools into paying for unordered online business directory listings. In December 2014, a final order banned them from the directory business and prohibited them from misrepresenting that consumers owe money for a good or service.

According to FTC, Law created CPU to run a virtually identical scam, faxing fake invoices to nearly 150,000 small businesses across the country seeking payment for online computer support and consulting. As a result, in August 2015, the FTC asked the court to hold Law and CPU in contempt of the YYB order.

The order announced today modifies the 2014 order, awards a judgment for the full amount of money taken from businesses, and requires payment of Law’s remaining liquid assets to the FTC.

The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City Division, entered the contempt order on October 30, 2015.

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