Senators ask FTC to investigate recent spike in gas, oil prices

A bipartisan group of Senators want the Federal Trade Commission to investigate their worries that Big Oil companies are manipulating the market and driving up costs of oil and gasoline.

Gasoline prices are above an average of $3.50 per gallon, according to new AAA estimates, and The Hill reports Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Olympia Snow (R-Maine), Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.), Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) want the FTC to use powers it was granted in 2007 to look into the spike in prices. Continue reading Senators ask FTC to investigate recent spike in gas, oil prices

Vice President of Mortgage Lender Pleads Guilty to Fraud

The former vice president and director of secondary marketing at Taylor, Bean & Whitaker has plead guilty to taking part in a scheme that ultimately led to nearly $2 billion in losses and the failure of Alabama-based Colonial Bank.

Raymond Bowman plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bank, securities and wire fraud and one count of making false statements; for each count, he faces up to five years in prison, restitution and fines maxing out at $250,000. Continue reading Vice President of Mortgage Lender Pleads Guilty to Fraud

Twitter settles FTC charges over 2009 security lapse

Twitter has settled charges from the Federal Trade Commission over a 2009 security lapse which puts its Web site users at risk of releasing personal information.

According to a report from the Sacramento Bee, the FTC said Twitter “deceived customers and put their privacy at risk by failing to keep their personal information safe.”

Twitter has agreed to not deceive the public about its security and privacy safeguards for the next 20 years. Presumably, that agreement will need to be extended at that time. Continue reading Twitter settles FTC charges over 2009 security lapse

Federal investigation finds no incidents of “wrongful foreclosure”

The federal Consumer Advisory Council said Thursday that an investigation into wrongful foreclosures nationwide found zero incidents of wrong-doing on the part of the Federal Reserve.

The nation’s largest banks have come under fire for poor business practices recently which resulted in thousands of homeowners across the country wrongfully removed from their homes through foreclosure. Continue reading Federal investigation finds no incidents of “wrongful foreclosure”

International airlines guilty of price-fixing schemes

Twenty-one airlines have been fined a total of $1.7 billion as a result of a federal price-fixing investigation.

According to an AP report, these airlines were facing financial straits more than 10 years ago when executives at major airlines met and devised a scheme to inflate cargo and fuel charges on customers.

The scheme worked and the airlines raked-in hundreds of millions of dollars, AP reports. Continue reading International airlines guilty of price-fixing schemes

Massachusetts Man Charged with Life Settlement Mail, Wire Fraud

Winthrop, Massachusetts resident Joseph Gennaco, 67, has been charged in federal court with on five counts of wire fraud and 13 counts of mail fraud involving sales of purported life settlements. Also taking part in the investigation were the US Postal Inspection Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office and the Massachusetts Securities Division.

The indictment charges Gennaco defrauded roughly 20 investors of monies totaling about $4 million by allegedly misrepresenting that the funds would be invested in life settlements. Gennaco allegedly represented to investors that their funds would be invested in one or more life insurance policies and that the investments would be repaid with a guaranteed profit from the sale of those policies.
Instead, online news source Life and Health Insurance News reports, Gennaco diverted investors’ funds to his own uses, allowed insurance policies to lapse by failing to pay the premiums, and failed to repay investors when he sold the policies, according to the indictment. Continue reading Massachusetts Man Charged with Life Settlement Mail, Wire Fraud

Former Apple manager pleads guilty on fraud charges

A former manager at Apple Inc. has pleaded guilty on federal fraud charges alleging he took $2 million in kickbacks against his former employer.

The Dept. of Justice filed charges against Paul Devine accusing him of taking kickbacks from Apple’s Asian suppliers in exchange for information they could use as leverage when doing business with the computer giant.

The information Devine exchanged with the suppliers was considered confidential to Apple. Devine worked as a global supply manager at Apple from 2005 until 2010, according to information at SocialBarrel.com. Continue reading Former Apple manager pleads guilty on fraud charges