FTC stuffs envelope-stuffing scammer

Envelope stuffing at home for thousands of dollars a scam FTC states

File this one under the anecdote "when things appear too good to be true they usually are."  The Federal Trade Commission got a district court to shut down an envelope-stuffing operation that promised consumers they could make thousands of dollars sruffing envelopes from the comfort of their own home.

The FTC charged that Louis Salatto and his company, Global US Resources, deceived consumers into paying up-front fees by making phony promises about the earning potential of their envelope-stuffing operation. According to the FTC's complaint, Salatto bought classified ads in local newspapers that promised weekly earnings ranging from $1,200 to $4,400.  Consumers who paid the up-front fee did not receive the materials they needed to do the envelope stuffing, nor the income promised, nor the refund that Salatto said they could get upon request, the FTC stated.

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The FTC found that since at least 2005, Salatto has advertised nationwide through large classified advertising networks such as Gateway Media and National Advertising Network, according to the FTC complaint.  Ads in pennysavers and community papers stated "No Experience Necessary! Start Immediately!"  They provided a toll-free number at which consumers were instructed to leave a message with their contact information.  Consumers who responded to these ads received a "registration form" that typically stated they would receive $8 for every brochure they stuffed, plus 25 percent of every sale made as a result of their mailing, the complaint alleged.  They were instructed to pay a "refundable" fee - typically $40 - by cash, check, or money order.

After paying, consumers typically received either nothing or a pamphlet titled "Secret Home Employment Guide," which listed other bogus work-at-home opportunities and provided instructions on how to market them, the FTC complaint stated.  Consumers who requested refunds were typically unable to reach anyone, and could only obtain the refunds by submitting a complaint to a Better Business Bureau or law enforcement agency.

According to the FTC the court order freezes the allegedly illegal tactics of Salatto and Global U.S. Resources and freezes their assets while the FTC seeks a permanent order.

Follow Michael Cooney on Twitter: nwwlayer8  

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