Benton, IL (KSDK) - A federal grand jury indicted two Florida residents and one Maryland resident or their roles in a telemarketing scheme that spanned across North America, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois Stephen Wigginton said Thursday.
According to court documents, the scam operated out of Palm Beach County, Florida and bilked more than 22,000 individuals of approximately $30 million. Victims can be found in all 50 states, including the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, all ten Canadian provinces and the Northwest Territory of Canada.
Wigginton's office became involved in the case because at least 54 victims of the scam reside in 27 of the 38 counties comprising the Southern District of Illinois.
The indictment alleges 39-year-old Daniel Gregg, 27-year-old Lacey Stone and 28-year-old Joshua Schneidau were telemarketers working for Creative Vacation Solutions and Universal Marketing Solutions, conducting a timeshare resale scheme.
The indictment alleges Creative Vacation Solutions and Universal Marketing Solutions falsely represented that they had found buyers for the consumers' timeshare interests and solicited fees of up to several thousand dollars in advance to cover pre-paid closing costs and other expenses. These timeshare sales did not occur at any point.
Gregg, Stone and Schneidau were each charged with one-count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud.
Others have been charged in connection with the Creative Vacation Solutions and Universal Marketing Solutions telemarketing scam.
Jennifer Kirk pleaded guilty to a criminal information indictment in June 2011 and was sentenced to over 16 years imprisonment and five years of supervised release.
Steve Folan, Ryan Brazel, and Brian Morris pleaded guilty to a multi-count indictment in August 2011 and are currently awaiting sentencing.
Joel Intravaia pleaded guilty to conspiracy in an information indictment in August 2011 and was sentenced to 60 months imprisonment and three years of supervised release.
Ralph Johnson entered a guilty plea to conspiracy charges filed in a criminal information indictment in September 2011 and was sentenced to 46 months imprisonment and two years of supervised release.
Kenneth Foote and Joseph Grizzanti were indicted by a federal grand jury in East St. Louis and pleaded guilty to charges in a Florida court. They're scheduled to be sentenced at the end of May.
Jeffrey Tracey Fields was charged with conspiracy in a criminal information indictment in October 2011. He pleaded guilty to charges in a Florida court.
John Thomas Egan pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges filed in a criminal information indictment on January 6. His sentencing is set for July 16, 2012.
In March 2012, John Robert Eddy, Cloyd James Holmes, Jr., Gino Christopher Marquez, and Donald Meyers were indicted by a federal grand jury in East St. Louis. The four are awaiting either arraignment or trial.