Supplement Maker Must Stop Claiming “Elimidrol” Can Relieve Opiate Withdrawal

Supplement Maker Must Stop Claiming “Elimidrol” Can Relieve Opiate Withdrawal

Last year, Sunrise Nutraceuticals was one of more than 100 supplement companies sued by the Federal Trade Commission for allegedly making unfounded health or disease-treatment claims. To settle that suit, Sunrise has agreed to stop falsely claiming that its Elimidrol dietary supplement can alleviate the symptoms of opiate withdrawal. [More]

Rich Renomeron

5 Things We Learned About Pay Phones & Why They Continue To Exist

When was the last time you used a pay phone? Given that just about every American old enough to say “hello” now has a cellphone, you’d be forgiven for thinking these once-vital telecom totems had gone the way of the telegraph. But there are still hundreds of thousands of pay phones out there, waiting to be used by people without any other options available. [More]

(David Transier)

Southwest Airlines Quietly Increases Early Check-In Fee

Unlike nearly all other domestic airlines, Southwest does not offer assigned seats and instead boards passengers in groups based on when they check-in for their trip. In some cases, travelers purchase an EarlyBird Check-In option so they can ensure an earlier boarding group without the hassle of setting their alarm clock to check in 24 hours prior. If you’re planning to go that route on your next trip, you should expect to spend a little bit more.  [More]

CEO Who Hiked Price Of Drug By Over 5400% Arrested In Unrelated Securities-Fraud Investigation

CEO Who Hiked Price Of Drug By Over 5400% Arrested In Unrelated Securities-Fraud Investigation

Three months after Turing Pharmaceuticals entered the spotlight by buying the rights to a generic drug used to save lives and dramatically increased the price from $13.50 to $750, the company’s CEO has been arrested in a securities-fraud investigation. However, the charges are related to another company the man once led.  [More]

Regulators Sue Weight-Loss Marketer Who Used Fines, Lawsuits To Stop Negative Consumer Reviews

Regulators Sue Weight-Loss Marketer Who Used Fines, Lawsuits To Stop Negative Consumer Reviews

Federal regulators on Monday continued their crackdown on deceptive, ineffective weight-loss products, this time by filing a lawsuit against a company that threatened to enforce a so-called “gag clause” by imposing fines and filing lawsuits to stop customers from posting negative reviews and testimonials for the products online.  [More]

Using Only His Phone, Man Scams 217 Macy’s Stores Into Issuing Fraudulent Refunds

Using Only His Phone, Man Scams 217 Macy’s Stores Into Issuing Fraudulent Refunds

If you plan to go on a scamming spree, you probably shouldn’t use your actual email address when completing the transactions. That was ultimately the undoing for a Georgia man who federal authorities say duped more than 200 Macy’s stores in 31 states into issuing fraudulent refunds — and all without having to drive to the mall. [More]

Man Charged With Operating Debt Collection Scheme That Targeted, Defrauded Spanish-Speaking Consumers

Man Charged With Operating Debt Collection Scheme That Targeted, Defrauded Spanish-Speaking Consumers

Deceiving consumers is a trademark for most unscrupulous operations attempting to collect debts that aren’t actually owed. Shady collectors have been known to lie about debts, misrepresent themselves as officers of the law, threaten lawsuits and, in the case of one operator, threaten Spanish-speaking residents with deportation. [More]

Walmart Manager Accused Of Conspiring In $78,000 Robbery

Walmart Manager Accused Of Conspiring In $78,000 Robbery

In the past, Consumerist has reported on several employees who could certainly take the title of worst employee at Walmart: the man arrested for stealing cash from a customer and food from the company’s deli, the woman who allegedly stole $10,000 in cash and gift cards while working as a cashier, or the long-time employee who stole $250,000 over several years. Today, we add another candidate to the list: an Oklahoma store manager who allegedly conspired to help another man steal $78,000 from the store. [More]

Pennsylvania Man Charged With Racketeering Related To Massive Payday Loan Scheme

Pennsylvania Man Charged With Racketeering Related To Massive Payday Loan Scheme

A life of stealing started with the snatching of a candy bar and transformed into an illegal multi-million dollar online payday lending scheme that allegedly defrauded thousands of people. At least that’s what federal prosecutors say led to charges against a Pennsylvania man recently. [More]

CFPB, Navajo Nation Team Up To Put An End To Tax Scheme Targeting Low-Income Consumers

CFPB, Navajo Nation Team Up To Put An End To Tax Scheme Targeting Low-Income Consumers

For many low-income consumers, tax time provides an opportunity to catch up on bills and get back on track financially. Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous companies out there that aim to make money of these same consumers by pointing them in the direction of high-cost tax-refund-anticipation loans. That appears to be the case for the owner of New Mexico-based H&R Block franchises and a tax-time loan company operating an alleged illegal tax-refund scheme.   [More]

Mike Mozart

Bank Of America To Pay $155K To Settle Claim It Discriminated Against Hearing-Impaired Customer

Financial institutions have a somewhat checkered past when it comes to accommodating consumers with hearing disabilities. There was Citibank’s demand that a hearing-impaired customer call them to clear up a suspicious transaction only to be hung up on repeatedly or there was the Chase rep that didn’t think deaf people could have credit cards. Now this week, Bank of America agreed to settle allegations it denied a loan modification after ignoring a customer’s request that the bank email her rather than force her to talk on the phone. [More]

PayPal Says Man Owes Nearly $300 For Dispute That He Won

PayPal Says Man Owes Nearly $300 For Dispute That He Won

Kentaro already went through a dispute resolution with PayPal for an HTC Droid Eris he sold on eBay. He says the reason for the dispute no longer exists, and anyway, he won and that was supposed to be the end of it. But now he owes $287, according to PayPal. [More]

Financial Reform Bill Oks Minimum, Maximum Credit Charges

Financial Reform Bill Oks Minimum, Maximum Credit Charges

The financial reform compromise may keep our financial system from reprising Chernobyl anytime soon, but it will also change the way consumers use their credit cards. Merchants will soon be allowed to refuse plastic for purchases of less than $10, a rate the Fed can boost as they see fit. Both the Fed and universities will also gain the power to set maximum credit charges. That means no more free flights to Europe after charging your kid’s tuition to your rewards card. The changes will go into effect the day after the compromise is signed into law. [More]

Should Travelocity's "TotalPrice" Guarantees Cover Mandatory Surcharges?

Should Travelocity's "TotalPrice" Guarantees Cover Mandatory Surcharges?

Aaron’s pissed because Travelocity’s quote for a one week car rental in Costa Rica didn’t include a mandatory insurance charge that cost him more than $100. Aaron feels cheated and wants Travelocity to pony up under their TotalPrice Guarantee, but Travelocity may not have done anything wrong. Join us across the jump to help us sort this out. [More]

Which Hotels Have Decent Wi-Fi?

Which Hotels Have Decent Wi-Fi?

If you want to pay out the nose for Wi-Fi, stay in a W hotel, says HotelChatter. The site has released its 6th annual report on Wi-Fi in U.S. hotels, and the W Hotel chain is named as the worst with no free lobby access and $15/day room rates. Other hotels that suck when it comes to wireless: DoubleTree, Four Seasons, Marriott, and Mandarin Oriental. [More]

American Airlines Raises Checked Bag Fees Effective February 1st

American Airlines Raises Checked Bag Fees Effective February 1st

American Airlines announced today that they’re raising checked baggage fees by $5, effective February 1st. Your first bag will now cost $25, and your second one will cost $35. If you want to check a third bag, you will have to buy the airplane (cash or certified checks only), and if you want to check a fourth bag, you will have to endure a phone call from AA’s CEO Gerard Arpey, where he will cry at you and say he doesn’t know how to run a company and he’s scared. He only made $8.9 million in total compensation last year, so cut him some slack. [More]

Harrah's Las Vegas Resorts Say No To Resort Fees

Harrah's Las Vegas Resorts Say No To Resort Fees

If you don’t like the idea of paying a resort fee the next time you visit Las Vegas, make sure you check out the various Harrah’s Entertainment resorts. Today they sent a press release to travel blogger and temporary TSA aggravator Chris Elliott in which they state that all of their Vegas resorts “exclude mandatory resort fees.” [More]

Watch Out For Undisclosed Resort Fees When Using Sites Like Priceline

Watch Out For Undisclosed Resort Fees When Using Sites Like Priceline

Travel consumer advocate Christopher Elliott has a new post about an undisclosed $15/day “resort fee” that Trump International Hotel Las Vegas plans to tack onto a customer’s bill. The surprise is that the customer reserved the room through Priceline, and thought when he made the reservation that Priceline was telling him the final room rate. [More]