Virginia telemarketer banned from calling NC residents
Release date: 12/21/2011
AG Cooper wins permanent court order, including more than $400,000 in fines
Raleigh: A Virginia telemarketing company that placed illegal telemarketing calls to North Carolina residents, including those on the Do Not Call Registry, has been permanently banned from calling North Carolina telephone numbers, announced Attorney General Roy Cooper.
“We’re sending the message that we don’t tolerate telemarketers skirting the law and calling people who’ve said they don’t want to be bothered,” said Cooper. “When North Carolina consumers join the Do Not Call Registry, telemarketers need to respect their wishes.”
Wake County Superior Court Judge Lucy N. Inman agreed this week with Cooper’s request to enter a default judgment and permanent injunction against Media Synergy Group, LLC of Richmond and its president Louis G. Anton. The court order bans the defendant and any employees or agents from placing any telemarketing calls, prerecorded or live, to North Carolina telephone numbers. The court has also ordered the defendants to pay $421,500 in civil penalties to the state.
In July 2009, Cooper filed suit against Media Synergy Group after hearing from consumers that the telemarketer made unsolicited sales calls to North Carolinians including to those who had joined the Do Not Call Registry. The company used automatic dialers to make calls and deliver a prerecorded message when an answering machine picked up. These so-called robocalls are illegal under North Carolina law unless a live caller first introduces the call and asks if you’re willing to listen to a recorded message.
Cooper’s office first alerted Media Synergy Group to complaints against the company in 2009 and they promised to take care of the problem but then continued to call North Carolina consumers, leaving messages attempting to sell commercial travel services and NASCAR tickets and paraphernalia.
To report illegal telemarketing calls like these, North Carolina consumers can call 1-877-5-NO-SCAM toll-free within the state or file a complaint online.
To cut down on unwanted telemarketing calls, North Carolinians can add their home and mobile telephone numbers to the Do Not Call Registry by calling 1-888-382-1222 from the number they wish to register or visiting www.donotcall.gov
“Consumers who have signed up for the Do Not Call Registry deserve the right to peace and quiet,” said Cooper. “I urge consumers to continue to let my office know if a company violates their rights.”
Contact: Noelle Talley, (919) 716-6413