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June 9, 2016

BISMARCK, ND – Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has banned Clarency “Harry” Wahl, of Orlando, Florida, doing business as Life Management Services of Orange County and LPS of Fla. Wahl, and his wife Karen, were running a sham operation leaving illegal pre-recorded messages with phony offers to lower the interest rate on consumers’ credit cards.

The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection division received several complaints from individuals who are on the Do Not Call list and had received these illegal pre-recorded messages.

“Con artists like the Wahls don’t care that these pre-recorded calls are illegal, because they are just interested in making some fast money. They target residents outside their own state in the hope that they can stay ahead of enforcement authorities long enough to cash in,” said Stenehjem.

Phony credit card interest rate reduction scams have been circulating in the state for several years. The supposed offer requires the customer to pay a large advance fee to secure the lower interest rate. Sometimes the scam artists claim the advance fee will be used to pay off the existing credit card balances at the lower interest rate. Once the scam artist has the advance payment, the scam is done. The money lines the scam artist’s pocket and the consumer is left with unpaid credit cards.

Parrell Grossman, director of the Consumer Protection division, reminded consumers that pre-recorded messages, or robocalls, are illegal in North Dakota. “If you receive an unsolicited pre-recorded message, you can be sure it is not a legitimate offer or service,” Grossman said.

Consumers who receive an unsolicited pre-recorded message can file a complaint with the consumer protection division.

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