A debt relief telemarketing scam that bilked millions of dollars from consumers has also landed a credit card processing company in legal hot water.
CardReady LLC, and its executives, Brandon Becker, James Berland, and Andrew Padnick, have been charged with credit card laundering and assisting and facilitating the debt relief scam. The Federal Trade Commission and state of Florida partnered in the investigation.
The debt relief organization, which was run by Steven Short and Karissa Dyar, and operated under several names, including E.M. Systems & Services, Administrative Management & Design, Empirical Data Group Technologies, Epiphany Management Systems, and KLS Industries, was ordered to cease operations last June after it was accused of promising to save consumers thousands of dollars by reducing their credit card interest rate, if they paid an up-front fee.
The processor arranged for 26 shell merchant accounts to be used to process payments for the debt relief organization.