On August 31, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission announced that it had ended a telemarketing operation in Peru that was using deceptive and abusive tactics to sell products to Spanish-speaking consumers attempting to learn English in the United States. The FTC originally brought charges against the company in February of 2017. The FTC alleged that the defendants sold several products and often threatened victims with arrest, jail, and even seizure of their home, if they refused to pay.
The defendants include ABC Hispana Inc., ABC Latina LLC, ISB Latino Inc., Gonzalo Ricardo Bazan Jimenez, and Milagros Raquel Urmeneta. The defendants pretended that they were affiliated with the government, as well as well-known companies, such as Walmart and a Spanish-language radio station. Under the agreement of the order, the defendants will be barred from telemarketing and prohibited from misrepresenting material facts when selling goods or services.
The defendants have also been barred from profiting from consumer information that was collected during the course of the scheme. The order has imposed a judgment of more than $6.3 million against the defendants.