Fla. AG files additional suit against company facing federal trouble

John O'Brien Aug. 6, 2008, 2:42pm


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Legal Newsline) - Following a U.S. Secret Service raid on the company's headquarters, Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum is filing suit against a company charged with operating a pyramid scheme.

McCollum says AdSurfDaily and its owners kept the multilevel marketing operation running even though there were insufficient funds to support any of the profits it promised to pay.

"Unless Defendants are temporarily and permanently enjoined from engaging further in the acts and practices alleged herein, the continued activities of Defendants will result in irreparable injury to the public for which there is no adequate remedy at law," McCollum's complaint says.

The U.S. Department of Justice has also filed a complaint against the company, which operated out of a flower shop. Federal authorities have frozen $53 million in bank accounts and two homes held by the company.

McCollum says ASD has hosted large conventions in Miami and Tampa in recent months and encouraged attendees to pay thousands of dollars for Internet advertising that would bring large financial returns.

The company promised as high as 150-percent returns on the investments and made approximately $100 million from the conventions, McCollum said.

In addition to actual damages, McCollum is seeking civil penalties. His suit is not connected to the federal investigation.

"Through Defendants' 'pyramid sales scheme' and advertising misrepresentations related to said scheme, as herein alleged, Defendants have committed acts and practices in trade or commerce which shock the conscience, offend established public policy and are immoral, unethical, oppressive, unscrupulous or substantially injurious to consumers, acts and practices which are material and are likely to mislead consumers acting reasonably under the circumstances," the suit says.

From Legal Newsline: Reach John O'Brien by e-mail at john@legalnewsline.com.

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