World Patent Marketing and Desa Industries (two companies that promise to promote your invention in exchange for thousands of dollars) actually lie to customers, takes their money and do absolutely nothing in exchange except turn into a giant bully threatening to send people to jail for complaining, according to the Federal Trade Commission. The government at the moment, in working with several chapters of the Better Business Bureau, is trying to in court to stop owner Scott Cooper, shut down his companies, and return everyone’s money.
The company, says the FTC, used fake success stories and client testimonials to lure customers. After straining them along for months or years, some of them ending up in debt or having lost their life savings, getting nothing in return. When people complain or request refunds, they receive letters threatening legal action. One inventor was told by a lawyer that seeking a refund was extortion under Florida law and, “since you used email to make your threats, you would be subject to a federal extortion charge, which carries a term of imprisonment of up to two years and potential criminal fines.”