Photo: fPat via Flickr
A woman who allegedly bilked $30 million from 22,000 victims in a timeshare telemarketing scheme has been sentenced to 15 years in prison, the Associated Press reports.An East St. Louis federal judge took no pity on 32-year-old Jennifer Kirk, a New Jersey resident prosecutors claim used two Florida-based telemarketing companies to convince timeshare owners they had buyers for their properties.
Since her arrest more than a year ago, Kirk gave birth to a new daughter. But it wasn’t enough to keep her out of prison.
“The tragedy of this is this very vulnerable young baby is going to get her start in life without her mother,” U.S. District Judge G. Patrick Murphy said.
In the scheme, Kirk employed telemarketers who took in closing costs from victims and promised to refund them after the deals closed. But instead, they pocketed the cash and never called back. (See the scams you should warn your grandma about.)
Like this telemarketing scheme we covered in November, the fraudsters called consumers without any notice.
If you ever receive an unsolicited call from a company looking for personal or financial information, report their phone number to the FTC by filing a complaint here. You can also report them to the Do Not Call registry.
The only legitimate way to get your name off telemarketers’ rolodexes is to sign up for the registry for FREE here or call 1-888-382-1222 from the number you want removed.