Mo. AG sues Utah company

Bryan Cohen May 3, 2011, 2:47am


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Legal Newsline) - Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster announced on Tuesday that his office has filed suit against a Utah company for allegedly selling fraudulent home security products and services.

Pinnacle Security LLC, headquartered in Orem, Utah, allegedly defrauded Missouri consumers through its sales of home security services and products in St. Louis County and other Missouri areas. Koster alleged that Pinnacle representatives approached consumers with existing home security systems and falsely represent they were there to upgrade the current system.

"Consumers should be very cautious when approached by people selling home improvement services door-to-door," Koster said. "Unfortunately, there are always those who will take advantage of unsuspecting consumers, but scammers should be assured that this office will aggressively pursue anyone who tries to defraud trusting Missourians out of their hard-earned money."

The representatives would allegedly lead consumers to believe that Pinnacle had acquired the company that provided a consumers existing security system or that the existing company had gone bankrupt. Consumers were allegedly given a prepared contract that supposedly authorized system upgrades, but actually authorized the installation of Pinnacle home security products.

Pinnacle allegedly made numerous false promises to consumers, including that the system included a "panic" alarm pendant in the event that the consumer fell or was injured, that their monthly bill would not increase and that the consumer would receive three months of free services.

Other alleged false promises included that the consumer's homeowner's insurance would pay part of the cost of service fees, that the consumer could cancel within 30 days with no financial penalties and that the security system would include a "carbon monoxide" monitoring system. Allegedly, when consumers discovered the deception and tried to cancel, Pinnacle would not refund their money and threatened legal action if they didn't continue to pay.

Koster is seeking preliminary and permanent injunctions that would prohibit further violations of the law, civil penalties for the state and an amount equal to 10 percent of total restitution ordered, and full restitution for victims as well as all court and investigative costs.

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