DES MOINES, Iowa (Legal Newsline) -- Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller on Friday announced lawsuits against two Arizona-based telemarketing companies and their owners for allegedly making misleading sales pitches that emphasized help to the disadvantaged or disabled.
American Handicapped & Disadvantaged Workers Inc. and Adli Najib Dasuqi, the company's owner, allegedly sold household items using telephone sales pitches in which callers identified themselves as handicapped.
AHDW allegedly misled Iowans about the callers' disabilities and used deceptive tactics to get Iowans, particularly older Iowans to make multiple purchases at premium prices.
"We allege that this company targeted several older Iowans repeatedly, in one case persuading an Iowa senior to make three consecutive $200 purchases in less than five months," Miller said in a statement. "And it appears a substantial amount of the money extracted from seniors through deception goes to the company owner, as opposed to people with true disabilities."
Miller's Consumer Protection Division is seeking a temporary injunction against AHDW to keep the company from making misleading calls in Iowa while the case is pending.
In the other lawsuit, Miller alleged that Advanced Employment Solutions LLC, Ann Marie Scott, the company's owner, and Mila Sprague, the company's general manager, sold household items and American flags using telephone pitches in which callers falsely claimed to be handicapped veterans or disabled workers.
The lawsuit alleges that the pitches were most often directed to older Iowans.
"Our suit alleges that this company targeted one 92-year-old Iowa woman repeatedly over the course of about a year's time," the attorney general said. "If the sale pitches to her were like others we're aware of, deception was at the root of the $900 the callers extracted from this Iowan."
On Thursday, Miller's office obtained a temporary order against Advanced Employment Solutions to keep the company from making misleading calls to Iowans while the case is pending.
Miller reminded Iowans that there are many legitimate charities soliciting contributions in Iowa.