Florida woman gets 14 years in prison for national scam

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (KSDK) – A 52-year-old Florida woman was sentenced Tuesday for her role in a national telemarketing scam, according to U.S. Attorney for Southern District of Illinois Stephen Wigginton.

Kathryn Garten, of Orlando, Fla., received 14 years for her role in the scheme, which defrauded people in Canada and the United States, including seven counties in southern Illinois.

Between 2008 and 2011, Garten worked as a telemarketer for National Solutions, which would cold call timeshare owners and solicit advanced fees from them under the pretense they had buyers for the property, according to court documents. Garten and others would pocket the advanced fees and not attempt to sell a timeshare.

The federal Trade Commission raided the company in 2011.

More than 2,500 owners across the country were scammed for more than $6 million by the company, according to court documents.

A jury found Garten guilty in August to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. She was also ordered to pay more than $900,000 in restitution.


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