Texas AG: 39,000 Texans eligible for restitution in Western Union settlement

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced on Tuesday that 39,000 Texans would be eligible for refunds after a $5 million settlement was reached with Western Union. The settlement stemmed from an investigation into complaints filed by customers who used the company’s service to wire transfer money to third parties who were involved in scams. Western…

RadioShack ordered to pay back customers for unused gift cards

Although out of business, the former electronics store RadioShack will have dish out cash to some of its former customers. The Texas Attorney General’s Office announced today consumers who had an unused balance on RadioShack gift cards will be able to file a claim. Radioshack’s payback is part of a settlement agreement previously approved in…

Texas Attorney General shuts down veteran charity organization

The Texas Attorney General has announced its shutting down a veteran’s charity organization that used little of the money it raised to help veterans in need. According to the AG’s office, Veterans Support Organization and four of its officers raised more than $2.5 million in Texas from 2010 to 2012. However, 70% of the funds…

Texas AG cracks down on Veterans Support Organization for deceptive marketing

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott announced today that Veterans Support Organization (VSO) and four of its principals (Richard Vanhouten, Michelle Vanhouten, Steven Casella and Robert Cruz) were charged with unlawfully soliciting charitable contributions and misrepresenting to Texas donors that the the money it raised would benefit local veterans in need. The state filed court documents alleging…

Texas Attorney General charges Austin-based contractor Castro Property Restoration with deceiving Texas homeowners

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott recently charged an Austin-based construction contractor with deceiving Texas homeowners and falsely representing available funding sources for home repairs and restoration. The state’s enforcement action names Castro Property Restoration, its owner Victor James Castro and his business associate Allen Lloyd Kinman (aka Jonathan Allen and Ziggy Allen) as defendants. According to…

Texas AG slams cellphone crammers with a lawsuit

You know those text message services that offer horoscopes, celebrity gossip, ringtones and the like? Better beware. You could end up with unexpected charges “crammed” onto your cellphone bill. Fortunately, government and state agencies are onto the scheme. This week, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed an enforcement action  against four text-messaging content providers and their billing…

Membership only clubs fork over $30 million for misleading ads

Kind of makes you feel special to join a club, doesn’t it? Well… Not when membership costs good money you didn’t realize you’d have to pay and you don’t get the benefits you were promised. And they don’t even teach you the secret handshake. Following a multi-state investigation, Texas, 47 states and the District of…

Texas shuts down non-profit Cristo Vive for unauthorized legal services

Ineffective, unqualified “help” is sometimes worse than no help at all. That turned out to be the case for some people who went to Austin non-profit Cristo Vive for help with their immigration status. The organization was shut down recently by the Texas Attorney General’s Office. The state secured an agreed final judgment and permanent…

AG’s office files action to halt practices of Beaumont-area dating service

Restraining order and asset freeze names Matchmaker and Sagejax Inc. It hasn’t been long since BBB warned the public to watch out for dating scams. Now it seems the Attorney General’s office has been on the case, investigating a specialized dating service that  targeted senior citizens, disabled Texans and veterans–and falsely claimed to have Better Business…

Did you order a computer from BlueHippo? You may have some money headed your way.

The Texas Attorney General announced this week that it has secured an agreed judgement with BlueHippo’s sole shareholder, Joseph K. Rensin, for violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. Under the agreement, Rensin will pay  $175,000 in restitution after BlueHippo allegedly accepted payment for personal computers that it did not deliver. Rensin and his company…