Head of robocall scheme banned from telemarketing

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Federal Trade Commission said Tuesday that it has banned the head of an illegal robocall operation from the telemarketing industry as part of a settlement deal.

Roy M. Cox, Jr. and several related companies that pushed credit card interest rate reduction programs, extended automobile warranties and home security systems over the phone were charged by the FTC in 2011 with illegally failing to transmit their name or their clients' names on consumers' caller ID displays. Cox and others instead used generic names such as "Card Services," ''Credit Services," or "Private Office."

The FTC also charged that they knew, or intentionally avoided knowing, that they called phone numbers on the federal "do-not-call" registry and made pre-recorded sales calls to consumers without consent.

The settlement order also includes a $1.1 million civil penalty that will be suspended due to Cox's inability to pay. But the full penalty will become due if Cox is found to have misrepresented his finances, the FTC said.

The commission voted 3-0-2 to approve the proposed consent judgment, with two commissioners not participating. The settlement doesn't constitute an admission by Cox that he violated the law.