Posted 2/12/11 : Litigation launched against I Works and others
A story that originally surfaced in eCommerce-Journal late December concerning a legal action launched by the US Federal Trade Commission appears to be gaining traction in online media this week following reports that a major online poker company has assisted the Commission in its investigation.
Full Tilt Poker is an internet venue where the central figure in the FTC action, a Utah man identified as Jeremy Johnson, allegedly gambled away some of the money that he appears to have obtained by questionable means.
It is claimed that he did so despite FTC warnings designed to preserve the assets in question.
The original disclosures reported a "…nationwide scam scheme that defrauds millions of Americans under guise of governmental help" and noted that the US Federal Trade Commission had filed a lawsuit with the US District for Nevada.
The litigation requested an injunction against a widespread Internet-based enterprise that allegedly made some $275 million by luring customers into trial memberships for bogus government grants and money-making schemes, then repeatedly charged them monthly fees for memberships they never ordered.
The Commission sought to halt the operation and secure the return of the unauthorised client fees that had been siphoned off.
"No consumer should be sucker-punched into making payments for products they don't know about and don't want," FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz said in a statement.
The FTC named Johnson as the alleged owner of I Works in Utah, along with nine other defendants, nine additional companies and 51 shell companies.
The Commission charged the defendants with violating the FTC Act by misrepresenting that government grants are available for paying personal expenses, that consumers are likely to obtain grants by using the defendants' program, that users of their money-making products will earn substantial income and that their offers are free or risk free.