Florida AG sues travel companies

Ashley Stinnett Sep. 16, 2009, 3:47pm

Bill McCollum (R)

TALLAHASEE, Fla. (Legal Newsline) - Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum is suing a host of travel companies over allegedly scamming consumers.

The lawsuit targets Suncoast Incentives, LLC and owner Nicholas Congleton, along with Royal Palm Vacations, World Travel and Capital Financial, of which Congleton is associated.

The complaint alleges Congleton enticed consumers to purchase travel club memberships for thousands of dollars but failed to deliver the incentives, according to McCollum.

The lawsuit also alleges consumers received advertisements for sales seminars that featured unauthorized use of cruise ships. Consumers were instructed to attend the seminars where they would pay membership fees ranging from $2,495 to $7,495 in order to travel for free.

In some instances, annual renewal fees of $249 were applied.

An investigation by the state's Economic Crimes Division revealed the cruises were not free and that the companies had no official relationship with any airline or cruise agency, as well as no official contract with any hotel or motel, according to McCollum.

The lawsuit is requesting the court prohibit Congleton or his businesses from selling any future travel packages, as well as reimburse affected consumers and pay the state in court fees.

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