FTC reimburses thousands of online pharmacy scam victims

FTC sends out checks to seniors who were victims of tele-scam
FTC sends out checks to seniors who were victims of tele-scam

The Federal Trade Commission has mailed checks to thousands nationwide who were defrauded by a bogus online pharmacy selling phony "membership packages" to the elderly.

The 19,324 checks total more than $159,000, and stem from the August 2009 settlement of a case brought as part of "Operation Tele-PHONEY," an FTC-led sweep of scam artists that included more than 180 actions against fraudulent telemarketers.

The scammers in this case, Med Provisions of Montreal, Canada, called consumers and convinced them their online pharmacy could save them 30% to 50% off prescription drug costs. Consumers who paid the up-front fee were misled into believing the program came with a 30-day money-back guarantee if they weren't satisfied. According to the FTC, consumers duped into ordering the "discount package" received either worthless prescription cards or nothing at all.

The checks must be cashed by July 21, 2010. Consumers should call 1-877-789-9497 with any questions. To file a complaint with the FTC in in English or Spanish, visit the FTC's online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357).