(Great Beyond)

Former Peanut Butter Moguls Found Guilty Of Knowingly Shipping Contaminated Food

Remember the massive outbreak of salmonella in peanut butter? No, not the one earlier this year, or the one in 2012, or the one in 2007. We mean the one in 2008, where peanut butter shipped from the Peanut Corporation of America was linked to more than 700 illnesses and nine known deaths. Five years after the company’s cartoonish terribleness was revealed, three executives were put on trial for knowingly distributing contaminated food to the American public. [More]

(Kat N.L.M.)

What Happens When One Mall Has Two Different Minimum Wages?

Normally, it wouldn’t be a huge deal to have one mall that sits on the border between two cities. There might be some small differences in laws or sales tax, but at the Westfield Valley Fair Mall in California, there’s a huge difference. It sits on the border between the cities of San Jose and Santa Clara, and San Jose recently raised the citywide minimum wage by $2. [More]

Most U.S. $100 Bills Are Not In The United States Right Now

Most U.S. $100 Bills Are Not In The United States Right Now

$100 bills: what are they good for? Most Americans don’t use them, some stores won’t accept them, and their untraceability makes them tempting to steal. What you may not realize, though, is that two-thirds of all United States $100 bills aren’t in circulation in the United States. Instead, they’re the currency of choice in places where people have no faith in their own country’s government and the money it prints. [More]

New York State Attorney General Tries To Shut Down Lyft Before Tonight’s NYC Launch

New York State Attorney General Tries To Shut Down Lyft Before Tonight’s NYC Launch

Seven hours from now, people in the New York City boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens were supposed to be able to dial up a vehicle from ride-sharing service Lyft and coast through traffic in a cloud of peer-to-peer vehicular bliss. “Not so fast!” the New York state government said to the service, its drivers, and their pink-mustachioed cars. [More]

Watch Out For This Spoofed E-Mail From E-ZPass

Watch Out For This Spoofed E-Mail From E-ZPass

E-ZPass, the transponder-based toll payment system available to drivers traveling on the East Coast, does send out invoices to the address on file for your license plate when you avoid toll collectors without having a transponder. However, they do not send these via e-mail. [More]

(Misfit Photographer)

Air Conditioner Thief Sentenced To Prison On Clean Air Act Charges

It’s important to do your research and learn everything you can before embarking on a project so you can anticipate what things might go wrong. For example, your plan to steal air conditioners and disassemble them for parts could go wrong when you accidentally release freon into the air. That’s what happened to an Ohio man who recently took a federal plea deal…not for theft, but for violating the Clean Air Act with his ill-gotten ACs. [More]

(@itsfischy on Twitter)

FAFSA Twitter Account Sorry For Posting “I’m Poor” Tweet Aimed At Financial Aid Applicants

You know what isn’t always that funny to people who can’t afford say, college? Calling them out for being poor on social media. Oh, hello, Federal Student Aid’s twitter account. You seem to have made a mistake in that area. [More]

Warning: This Bottle Of Wine May Explode

Warning: This Bottle Of Wine May Explode

Sure, we at Consumerist have our issues with the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, but here’s one case where centralized government control of the booze supply may be a good thing. Since the Liquor Control Board owns and operates all liquor stores in the state, reports of exploding prosecco bottles filtered in to the government in a timely manner, and they in turn have alerted the public. [More]

$18 Million WIC And Food Stamps Fraud Scheme Used Pretend Grocery Stores

$18 Million WIC And Food Stamps Fraud Scheme Used Pretend Grocery Stores

WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) and SNAP (Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program) are both federally-funded, state-administered programs with the simple goal of preventing Americans from going hungry. In Georgia, 54 people have been indicted for setting up pretend grocery stores that defrauded the programs of millions of dollars. [More]

People Still Falling For Fake IRS Phone Demand Scam

People Still Falling For Fake IRS Phone Demand Scam

Remember the scam that we kept hearing about during tax season, where victims received a phone call from a person pretending to represent the Internal Revenue Service who demanded immediate payment on a prepaid debit card? People just keep on falling for it. Yes, even now that most people have turned in their tax returns. [More]

Hotel Files $74,500 Defamation Suit Against Anonymous TripAdvisor Reviewer

Hotel Files $74,500 Defamation Suit Against Anonymous TripAdvisor Reviewer

The relative anonymity of online review sites makes it tempting to vent one’s anger toward a company in an over-the-top way, but does the use of a screen name prevent you from being held liable for making knowingly false claims? One hotel in Oregon says no, and is suing an unknown TripAdvisor reviewer to prove that point. [More]

(Bill Sodeman)

Shoes Are Not Magic: Vibram Agrees To $3.75 Million Class Action Settlement

Even runners, people who spend lots of time pushing themselves physically through all sorts of weather, are susceptible to the idea that one special product can provide near-magical advantages. Vibram USA has settled a class-action lawsuit alleging that they marketed their weird-looking Five Fingers shoes as providing physical benefits for which they have no evidence. [More]

Police Use Pinterest To Get Victims’ Stolen Stuff Back To Them

Police Use Pinterest To Get Victims’ Stolen Stuff Back To Them

If you’re a police department and want to reunite people with their stolen property, you need to get pictures of recovered items in front of the public. What’s the best way to do that? Social media, of course. By posting albums on Facebook and Pinterest, departments can get pictures of recovered items in front of a maximum number of eyeballs, increasing the odds that someone will recognize a piece. [More]

FCC Catches Vigilante Highway Cell Phone Jammer, Wants To Fine Him $48K

FCC Catches Vigilante Highway Cell Phone Jammer, Wants To Fine Him $48K

Admit it: there’s been at least one moment in your life when you secretly wished for a cell phone jammer in your pocket. Maybe you were in line at the grocery store, or watching a movie, or someone who wouldn’t stop texting almost merged into you on the highway. However, you should not actually do this. Why? Let the case of this Florida man serve as a cautionary tale. [More]

California Lawmakers Pull Plug On Smartphone “Kill Switch” Law

California Lawmakers Pull Plug On Smartphone “Kill Switch” Law

With nearly 3 million phones vanishing — often into the hands of sticky-finger thieves — each year, there has been a recent push to introduce legislation that would require wireless providers to include a “kill switch” functionality in all devices, allowing phone owners to remotely deactivate their devices until, and only if, they are located. But one such bill in California has been thwarted, and supporters are blaming the wireless industry. [More]

Tax Refund Fraudsters May Have Targeted Physicians

Tax Refund Fraudsters May Have Targeted Physicians

Plenty of Americans don’t file their tax returns until the very last week: it’s just human nature. We shared scary warnings many times before this year’s April 15 deadline that fraudsters are filing Americans’ returns before they do, harvesting their refunds. Some even scarier news (if you’re a health care provider) broke today: some state medical societies report outbreaks of tax return scams among their members. [More]

(Pete)

My Taxes Are Done. What Can I Throw Out Now?

Unless you filed for an extension, your tax return is now done and posted through the mail or beamed through the Interweb to the IRS and your state government, if required. That’s a relief. Now, what items in your files should you keep, and which can you throw out? [More]

(Krysten Newby)

I Give Up: How Do I File For An Extension On My Tax Return?

Humans are a procrastinating bunch. Sure, many punctual and responsible people have already filed their federal and state tax returns, especially people who are owed a refund. Not you. You’re missing an important document or are too confused about all of this stuff to stay up doing the e-filing equivalent of running inside the post office door at 11:57 PM. You give up. This post is for you. [More]