Pam Bondi: Company Banned from Selling Vacation packages
Attorney General Pam Bondi and the Federal Trade Commission have reached a settlement that will ban a company from selling vacation packages.
According to a release, VGC Corporation of America, was charged -- through a case brought as part of the FTC’s Hispanic Law Enforcement Initiative -- with tricking consumers into believing they had won a vacation package as a prize and then failing to provide the package as promised.
"By working closely with the Federal Trade Commission, our two agencies have stopped this business from deceiving consumers," Bondi stated in a release. "This is an excellent example of state and federal agencies working together to protect consumers."
According to the complaint filed in May 2011, the defendants advertised a vacation package worth thousands of dollars as a prize to consumers who called a toll-free number and answered a trivia question. Callers were told they had won, and that if they paid up to $400 in "taxes" or "fees" they would receive their prize. The complaint alleged that callers did not receive the vacation packages as promised. The FTC and the Florida attorney general's office charged the company with violating the FTC Act and the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act, respectively.
A $14 million judgment against VGC was suspended pending the company satisfying a number of conditions.
The settlement bars the defendants from collecting payments from their customers who responded to the offer before the order was issued, using or selling those customers' personal information, and failing to properly dispose of customer information.
VGC Corporation of America also does business as All Dream(s) Vacations, All Dreams Travel, Five Star(s) Vacations, 5 Star(s) Vacations, Total Tours, and Travel & Tours Corp.; All Dream Vacations Corp., also doing business as All Dreams Vacations; Violeta Gonzalez, also known as Violeta Rojas; Cesar A. Gonzalez; and Samir Jose Saer Rodriguez, also known as Samir Saer.