Is it Ethical to Go Back to School While on an Income-Driven Repayment Plan?

Question: Dear Steve, I filed Chapter 7 in 2017. 5k med bills, 40k student loans, 10k hung up in federal litigation (for-profit schools) since the Obama era. Med bills forgiven Filed post-bankruptcy suit to have student loans forgiven based on Brunner (SCOTUS precedent criteria for discharge) Offered income-based repayment option by feds, $0 for 25 … Read more

Return-A-Pet Scam Preys On Victims Of Lost Pets

It’s annual pet scammer week! That’s a lie. But it sure feels like it. Eric Stein was charged with running an investment scam through Return-A-Pet LLC. Return-A-Pet was a New York company that allegedly facilitated the return of lost pets to their owners. Stein was out on supervised release for a previous investment fraud scheme … Read more

Tax Refund Check Cashing Scheme Hits Southern Florida

As tax season rolls around it’s no surprise to see tax refund check cashing schemes arising in the news. Announced Monday was the filing of a criminal Information charging defendants Wilson Lau, and his wife, Kate Yuee Lau, for their participation in a check cashing scheme involving more than $5 million in fraudulently obtained tax … Read more

FTC Halts Fake News Sites About Deceitful Acai Berry Weight-Loss Products

We’ve covered the deceitful acai berry weight-loss products over the past year on our site (see here, here and here). It was announced on Wednesday that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has stopped six operators from using fake news site that allegedly deceived consumers about this product. Six online marketers agreed to settlements with the … Read more

Raleigh Native Indicted In Connection With Fraud And Extortion

The former President of Encap Golf Holdings LLC (“Encap”), William Gauger III, was indicted this week for his participation in a scheme to extort approximately $100,000 from a financial consultant and a fraudulent invoicing scheme relating to his work for a New Jersey-based management firm. Gauger allegedly hired his brother-inlaw Craig Groce, who was originally … Read more

Investment Fraudster Defrauds Over 200 Out Of $14 Million

Bradley Stark, the fraudster defendant who represented himself at trail was convicted by a federal jury for deceiving investors about an investment scheme that involved more than 200 victims and more than $14 million. Following Stark’s five-day trial he has been convicted on all counts of an indictment charging him with seven counts of wire … Read more

Elaborate Scheme Leaves 180 With Over $1 Million In Fraudulent Purchases

Charges were announced last Thursday against seven members of an identity theft ring that allegedly used stolen identities of more than 180 people at major New York City retail stores including Home Depot, Sears, Kmart and Kohl’s, among others. The ring of fraudsters resold merchandise and gift cards for a profit after purchasing them under … Read more

Ponzi Schemes Are The New Black

Thirteen days into the year and I feel like all I’ve written about is Ponzi-scheme after Ponzi-scheme after Ponzi-scheme. Today I bring to you the sentencing of Jenifer Devine, the woman who owned a purported wholesale merchandise broker and admitted to running a multimillion-dollar Ponzi scheme that resulted in over $2 million in losses to … Read more

Largest Recruiter Of Shapiro’s $930 Million Ponzi Scheme Sentenced

Sydney Jack Williams of Naples, Florida was sentenced today to a year and a day in prison for failing to report more than $12 million to the IRS in related commissions received in Nevin Shapiro’s $930 million Ponzi scheme. Williams previously plead guilty to an Information that charged him with one count of subscribing to … Read more

Four Israeli Residents Charged With Phony Lottery Prize Scheme Extradited To US

It was recently announced that four defendants have been extradited from Israel on charges relating to their participation in multiple lottery telemarketing fraud schemes. The schemes targeted elderly victims in the United States and netted millions of dollars in profits. In July of 2009 three of the extradited defendants, Avi Ayache, Yaron Bar, and Ian … Read more

Upromise And FTC Settle Charges Over Internet Toolbar That Deceptively Collected Consumers’ Personal Information

If you have a child and are saving for their college fund, chances are you’ve heard of the company Upromise. Upromise is a company that offers consumers a membership service that allows them to save money for college. When consumers make a purchase or buy a service from a Upromise partner merchant they then receive … Read more

AmBanc, Commercial Capital Banc and U.S. Underwriting Fraud Scheme

Last month the United States Attorney’s Office announced that James France was indicted for wire wire fraud in connection with an advance fee scheme. Apparently, France held himself out as being in the business of commercial lending, and operated his business under various names such as AmBanc, Commercial Capital Banc and U.S. Underwriting. The indictment … Read more

East Coast Credit Card Fraud Ringleader Gets 12 Years In Prison

An identity thief was sentenced earlier this month to 12 years in prison for managing and east coast credit card fraud ring. Jonathan Oliveras, used counterfeit credit cards encoded with stolen account information up and down the East Coast of the United States and has been sentenced for this crime. In addition to his 12 … Read more

Florida’s Foreclosure Solution Specialists Operators Charged With Fraud

Earlier this month it was announced that Lisa Wright, Cathy Saffer and Carrington Coombs were all charged with fraud in a Florida foreclosure rescure scheme. Wright and Saffer were charged with conspiracy to defraud homeowners and banks in a foreclosure rescue scheme. Coombs, a certified public accountant, was also charged as a participant in the … Read more