Greg MacKinnon, who was part of a group of collectors that were permanently barred from collections back in 2018, yesterday pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of conspiring to defraud the government out of more than $3 million in unpaid taxes.
Sentencing guidelines recommend that MacKinnon serve five years in prison and be fined anywhere from $25,000 to $250,000. Has has also agreed to pay more than $3 million in restitution to the government. He is due to be sentenced in January.
MacKinnon admitted to transferring money from his collection company, Vantage Point Services, to other businesses and pretending those transfers were for business purposes. The money was eventually returned to him and another co-conspirator.
The Federal Trade Commission and the Attorney General of New York sued MacKinnon, Vantage Point Services, and other defendants back in 2015, accusing them of violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act by impersonating government agents and district attorneys, threatening arrests if payments were not made, illegally charging processing fees, and telling third parties that individuals had committed crimes and were facing arrest.
The defendants reached a settlement with the FTC and N.Y. AG in 2018, agreeing to a suspended judgment of $22 million and a permanent ban from the industry.
Greg MacKinnon is the brother of Douglas MacKinnon, who has been described as a debt collection “kingpin” as regulators seek to enforce a $60 million judgment against him.