Vacation Scams - Telemarketing Fraud Halted
Howell Township, NJ; In the wake of an ongoing investigation into nearly a dozen signed fraud complaints, the New Jersey State Police and the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General executed two simultaneous warrants on two telemarketing agencies and a private residence Saturday. Operation Travel Sweep was orchestrated by the Office of the Attorney General's Financial Crimes Division and assisted by the New Jersey State Police, High-Tech Crimes Unit in an effort to successfully prosecute thirteen illegal telemarketing agencies throughout Monmouth and Middlesex Counties.
Shortly after 1 PM on Saturday, detectives from both agencies and the local police department executed search warrants on the Metro Marketing LLC. telemarketing firm and Monmouth Executive Vacations, Inc, both located on Route 9, in Howell Township. Over twenty computers and dozens of paper files were seized from the offices. In addition to the search warrants, two arrests were made of persons with outstanding warrants. "It's kind of a second chance job for a lot of troubled individuals." said detective Samaros of the New Jersey State Police. "they'll hire anyone who can sound enticing on the phone and appropriately enough, manipulate" he says. "We have people here with 'rap sheets' that have burglaries, drug posession, drug dealing, assaults, all sorts of stuff" says Damian Ladars of Metro Merketing, LLC.
Metro Marketing, LLC and Monmouth Executive Vacations, Inc. are being named in ten criminal complaints by consumers and one by the New Jersey Attorney General's Office for allegedly selling bogus time-share vacations packages via telephone sales. The complaints seemingly name the two companies in nearly one-million dollars in fraud and could potentially lead to criminal charges in over fifteen individuals and the company owners.
Operation Travel Sweep was initiated in the wake of the failed 2014 fraud investigation into similar actions committed by a Freehold telemarketing firm which became unsubstantiated after the state charged two Attorney General detectives with charges of perjury and co-conspiring. The investigation was suspended after the hundreds of thousands lost on the now defunct investigation could not be quickly recovered.
"Charges are sure to follow within the following weeks" assured Attorney General Representative, Kathy Telacapei.