BISMARCK, ND – A telemarketer from Massachusetts who ignored North Dakota’s consumer fraud and Do Not Call laws, and refused to comply with the Attorney General’s Civil Investigative Demand, has been banned from conducting any business in the state, announced Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem.
Investigators with the Consumer Protection Division contacted John Galli of Malden, Massachusetts, in December 2013, after receiving a complaint from an individual registered on the Do Not Call list. Galli, doing business as Northshore Publishers, Northshore Publishing, and North Shore Marketing, was soliciting magazine renewal subscriptions by telephone and charging credit cards immediately, in violation of the contract requirement for these types of sales.
Galli refused to cooperate with investigators, even mocking investigative efforts during a telephone conversation in December, and then ignoring subsequent phone calls, letters, and the Civil Investigative Demand from the Attorney General’s office.
“Galli apparently believes himself safe from any consequences of his law-breaking simply because he is located in another state. That is not the case,” said Stenehjem, who also noted that as Galli refused to provide any information about his illegal activities in North Dakota, it is difficult to know how many sales calls were made or how many people were charged for the supposed magazine renewal subscriptions.
A violation of the cease and desist order is subject to a $1,000 penalty per violation, in addition to the penalties provided for violations of the consumer protection laws.
Parrell Grossman, Director of the Consumer Protection Division, reminded consumers that many companies that solicit renewal subscriptions to magazines are not associated with the magazine publisher. “If you want to renew a magazine subscription, you are better off dealing directly with the magazine publishers. Not only will you save money, but you also increase the likelihood that you will get the magazines you have paid for,” said Grossman.
North Dakota consumers who have not already filed a complaint about these solicitations for magazine subscription renewals can submit a complaint form from the Attorney General’s website, or by contacting the Consumer Protection Division at 701-328-3404.