Three Peruvian Men Sentenced: Call Centers That Threatened And Defrauded Spanish-Speaking U.S. Consumers

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“The three men managed and operated call centers based in Lima and Cajamarca, Peru, which used government impersonation, lies, and threats to steal money from thousands of Spanish-speaking victims in the United States.

Earlier today, U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola sentenced Johnny Enso Hidalgo Marchan, 40, of Lima, Peru, to 100 months in federal prison for his role overseeing one of the Peruvian call centers.  In sentencing Hidalgo, Judge Scola stated that it was “important to impose a significant sentence to deter people in other countries who think they can prey on people in the U.S. with impunity.”  (…)

As part of their guilty pleas, Hidalgo, Hermoza, and Guerra admitted that they falsely posed as attorneys affiliated with U.S. courts and government agencies in threatening victims with fines, detention, confiscation of property, deportation, and community-service requirements to obtain payments from the victims.  U.S. consumers lost more than $1.5 million to the defendants’ fraud scheme. (…)

The defendants and other call center employees claimed that the consumers could resolve the supposed debts and avoid threatened consequences if they immediately paid a “settlement fee.”  Consumers who contested the settlement fees were told that failure to pay could lead to harmed credit, arrest, deportation, or seizure of property.”  

Source: Department of Justice

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