FTC charges North Carolina debt collection operation with taking money from consumers

By Mark Iandolo | Jul 5, 2017

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced June 23 that it charged Anthony Swatsworth, ACDI Group LLC, and Solutions to Portfolios LLC (ACDI) with allegations of taking money from consumers for fake debts the consumers did not actually owe.

The FTC says the defendants bought phony payday loan debts – loans supposedly made by “500FastCash” – from SQ Capital through a debt broker. The defendants then allegedly collected on those debts even after learning the debts were fake. Moreover, the defendants purportedly received a full refund from SQ Capital for their purchase, yet continued to collect on the fake debts.

After the defendants bought the phony loan debts and started to try and collect from consumers, consumers immediately complained. The defendants brought these complaints up to SQ Capital and SQ Capital refunded them and told them to stop collecting on the debts. The defendants, however, purportedly continued to collect on the phony debts for at least seven more months. Alleged conduct of this nature violates the FTC Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

The FTC voted 2-0 to authorize the staff to file the complaint, which was then filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina.

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