Boardman telemarketer closing in wake of lawsuit alleging decept - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Boardman telemarketer closing in wake of lawsuit alleging deceptive solicitation for charity

Posted: Updated:

BOARDMAN TOWNSHIP, Ohio - A Boardman telemarketing firm suspected of deceptively soliciting donations for firefighter and police charities has reached a temporary agreement with the Ohio attorney general's office.

A lawyer representing Encore Music Productions says the owner plans to close the business and turn over to the charities, any checks made out to those organizations while the case plays out.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine filed the  lawsuit and was granted a temporary restraining order against Encore and its agents for allegedly deceiving donors while soliciting for firefighter and police charities.

According to the attorney general, since 2006, Encore solicited for more than 30 organizations in Ohio and four organizations in Pennsylvania by selling tickets and business advertisements for local concerts.

An investigation by DeWine's office found that Encore and its agents Phil's Productions LLC, MVP Productions, and Sharp Productions committed several violations including:

Lying to donors by saying 100 percent of donations went to a local charity, when only 10 to 33 percent went to charity.

Training telemarketers to falsely identify themselves as volunteers or firefighters.

Failing to identify themselves as professional solicitors.

Hiring more than 22 recently convicted felons as telemarketers in violation of Ohio law.

Failing to properly register with the Ohio Attorney General's Office.

Attorney General DeWine's 42-count civil lawsuit alleges violations of Ohio's Corrupt Activities Act and the Ohio Charitable Organizations Act, including money laundering, mail and wire fraud, theft, and deceptive acts and practices.

The Attorney General seeks redistribution of its assets to legitimate charities, civil penalties, and other costs.

The lawsuit names 18 defendants:

  • Encore Music Productions Ltd. of Boardman
  • Phil's Productions LLC of Youngstown
  • Joseph Chiovitti of Boardman
  • Philip Howells of Youngstown
  • M.V.P. Productions LLC of Cambridge
  • Martin Vernello of East Liverpool
  • Kingsley Harris of Canfield
  • Jennifer Fairall of Campbell
  • Jessica Covington of Lowellville
  • Matthew Bocian of Youngstown
  • William Sharp and Waive Sharp, doing business as Sharp Productions, of Bucyrus
  • William Berrier of North Lima
  • Abby Makara of Youngstown
  • Laura Harper of CambridgeJaime Kegarise of Struthers
  • Esther Holmes of Youngstown
  • John Douglas of Youngstown.

The Pennsylvania Attorney General also filed a lawsuit against Encore Music.

 

  • More From wfmj.comMore>>

  • WWII vet, 86, beaten outside Ohio hospital

    WWII vet, 86, beaten outside Ohio hospital

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 7:30 PM EDT2014-09-02 23:30:35 GMT
    CINCINNATI (AP) - Authorities say an 86-year-old World War II veteran is recovering after being beaten outside a southwest Ohio hospital where he was visiting his ailing wife. WCPO-TV reports that Paul Browning was outside Good Samaritan Hospital when the attack happened Sunday. He was there visiting his wife, who is recovering from a stroke. Family members say Browning was left bruised and swollen, and was expected to be hospitalized a few days. Officers arrested 30-year-old Craig Phelps. H...More >>
    CINCINNATI (AP) - Authorities say an 86-year-old World War II veteran is recovering after being beaten outside a southwest Ohio hospital where he was visiting his ailing wife. WCPO-TV reports that Paul Browning was outside Good Samaritan Hospital when the attack happened Sunday. He was there visiting his wife, who is recovering from a stroke. Family members say Browning was left bruised and swollen, and was expected to be hospitalized a few days. Officers arrested 30-year-old Craig Phelps. H...More >>
  • Lightning kills boy swimming in Pennsylvania creek

    Lightning kills boy swimming in Pennsylvania creek

    Monday, September 1 2014 3:09 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:09:34 GMT
    Authorities say a lightning strike has killed a boy who was swimming in a central Pennsylvania creek.More >>
    Authorities say a lightning strike has killed a boy who was swimming in a central Pennsylvania creek.More >>
  • Ohio police: Wedding guest tries to steal gifts

    Ohio police: Wedding guest tries to steal gifts

    DAYTON, Ohio (AP) - Police in Dayton say a wedding guest tried to make off with checks and cash for the newlyweds. Officers were called to the wedding reception late Saturday night after workers noticed that a safe had been emptied out. Police say about $6,800 was found in unopened wedding cards inside a tuxedo garment bag belonging to one of the guests. A police report says surveillance video showed a man entering the office and later walking out with the garment bag. The man told police he...More >>
    DAYTON, Ohio (AP) - Police in Dayton say a wedding guest tried to make off with checks and cash for the newlyweds. Officers were called to the wedding reception late Saturday night after workers noticed that a safe had been emptied out. Police say about $6,800 was found in unopened wedding cards inside a tuxedo garment bag belonging to one of the guests. A police report says surveillance video showed a man entering the office and later walking out with the garment bag. The man told police he...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms