Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/07/07/oft_scammer/
OFT wins pledge from premium rate scammer
Won't do it again, honest
The operators of a premium rate phone service have pledged not to rip-off punters again with empty promises that they won some "major prize".
London-based Churchcastle Limited - which traded as Fast Cash and UK Prize Bonanza - contacted 1.4m people telling them they'd won a fantastic prize.
In reality, all that was on offer was some holiday vouchers or other strings-attached coupons.
To claim their "prize", though, punters had to call a premium rate phone line costing £1.50 a minute. The calls lasted five minutes with each completed call costing £7.50.
More than 190,000 people called the bogus prize line, reported the Office of Fair Trading (OFT).
Said OFT exec director Penny Boys: "Misleading mailings such as these deceive consumers and damage the reputation of fair-dealing businesses using legitimate direct marketing techniques.
"We will continue to work with fellow enforcers to stamp out these practices." ®
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