CHICAGO - Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced today that she has filed a lawsuit against a Granite City marketing firm that allegedly misrepresented potential customer lists it sold as being verified and screened.
Ronnie Henderson of Granite City and Paula Caveny of Edwardsville and their business, Select Marketing Solution Management, allegedly sold "lead lists" to companies without first checking to see if those listed were on the national Do Not Call registry or if the consumers truly wanted to be contacted.
The alleged lists were sold to financial advisors, insurance companies and sales people.
Madigan's suit alleges that the defendants are in violation of the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act.
"At a time when small businesses are struggling to stay afloat, this company charged business owners hundreds of dollars for information that could have caused them to violate the Do Not Call List and leave them potentially liable," Madigan said.
A number of businesses filed complaints with Madigan's office about the marketing firm's actions, with alleged losses totaling over $11,000 for inaccurate lists that they purchased. Many numbers on the list were disconnected and many of those who answered were never contacted by Select Marketing for their approval, Madigan says.
Madigan is seeking a court order to stop the defendants from continuing to sell the leads. She also wants all pending contracts between the defendants and their customers voided and for Select Marketing to pay refunds to all affected customers.
Furthermore, Madigan seeks to impose a $50,000 civil penalty per violation of the act, as well as an additional $50,000 penalty for violations found to be committed with the intent to defraud and all costs associated with the litigation.