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US v. Jennifer Putnam, et al.


Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (CLOSED)

United States v. Jennifer Putnam, a/k/a "Jennifer Buffington," a/k/a "Kathryn DeMerris," Case No. 10cr315-CMA (D. Colorado)

Most recent update: 2/7/11 (see end of document)

6/10/10 Update:

On June 8, 2010, a federal grand jury in the District of Colorado returned an indictment charging Jennifer Putnam, a/k/a/ "Jennifer Buffington," a/k/a "Kathryn DeMerris," with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371, and four counts of wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1343. The indictment charged Putnam with operating Selective Consulting Group and Universal Concepts, which were locating companies. The indictment alleged that in 2008-2009 Putnam made material misrepresentations to and concealed material facts from individuals who had purchased or were considering purchasing a vending machine business opportunity. The indictment charged, among other things, that Putnam claimed that she had locations for vending machines available in the potential purchaser's area, when, in fact, she did not. Putnam was ordered to make her initial appearance at 10:00 a.m. on June 22, 2010, at the Byron G. Rogers United States Courthouse, 1929 Stout Street, Denver, Colorado, Courtroom C201.

10/27/10 Update:

A change of plea hearing has been scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on November 17, 2010, before Judge Christine M. Arguello, at the Alfred A. Arraj United States Courthouse, 901 19th Street, Denver, Colorado.

11/18/10 Update:

On November 17, 2010, Jennifer Putnam, who also used the names "Jennifer Buffington" and "Kathryn DeMerris," pled guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud.  Putnam operated Specialty Marketing, Selective Consulting Group, and Universal Concepts, all of which were vending machine locating companies.  Putnam admitted that she falsely said her companies had vending locations available and waiting in the areas where potential purchasers of vending machines lived, when, in fact, locations never were available and waiting and no effort was made to find locations until the purchaser had paid for her services.  Putnam is scheduled to be sentenced at 8:30 a.m. on February 4, 2011, by Judge Christine M. Arguello, at the Alfred A. Arraj United States Courthouse, 901 19th Street, Denver, Colorado.

2/7/11 Update:

On February 4, 2011, Jennifer Putnam was sentenced to 5 years of probation, including 8 months of home detention, and ordered to pay $91,752 in restitution. Putnam also used the names "Jennifer Buffington" and "Kathryn DeMerris." She operated Specialty Marketing, Selective Consulting Group, and Universal Concepts, all of which were vending machine locating companies. Putnam admitted that, when doing locating work with American Vending Systems, she falsely said her companies had vending locations available and waiting in the areas where potential purchasers of vending machines lived, when, in fact, locations never were available and waiting and no effort was made to find locations until the purchaser had paid for her services.

Five other defendants have been convicted in connection with American Vending Systems (see http://www.justice.gov/civil/cpb/cases/ Cases/AmericanVending/index.htm).

Under federal law, restitution is ordered in criminal cases, in general, on the basis of losses a defendant causes and without regard to the defendant’s ability to pay the restitution. To date, the government has been unable to collect money from the defendant to pay restitution. There is no guarantee that any restitution will be collected. If restitution is paid, it likely will be a small percentage of the total amount lost.


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