News and Press Releases

Palm Beach Man Sentenced for Defrauding Timeshare Owners

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 31, 2012

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Jeffrey C. Mazanec, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, announced today that Michael J. Ferrari, 27, of West Palm Beach, Florida, was sentenced to five years and three months’ imprisonment in connection with his participation in a fraudulent timeshare business in Palm Beach County.

According to the criminal information and plea and sentencing documents filed with the court, Ferrari and his co-conspirators engaged in a scheme to defraud timeshare owners throughout the United States and Canada. From July 2009 through February 2010, telemarketers contacted more than 2,000 victims and collected more than $3.3 million in advance fees for timeshare marketing and sales services, which were never provided. The telemarketers, operating under the name International Resort Solutions, LLC, solicited clients through at least six boiler rooms, each of which was located in Palm Beach County. The telemarketers would make false and misleading representations to the timeshare owners regarding International Resort Solutions’ services. Among the false representations, the telemarketers claimed that International Resort Solutions had buyers for their timeshares, that International Resort Solutions had a closing scheduled for their timeshares, and that International Resort Solutions would actively market their timeshares to potential buyers.

Ferrari operated one of International Resort Solutions’ boiler rooms and was responsible for directing the activities of the telemarketers and collecting the sales proceeds generated at the room. To date, ten individuals, including Ferrari, have been convicted and sentenced in connection with the fraudulent activities at International Resort Solutions. The sentences imposed range from 5 years imprisonment to 10 1/2 years imprisonment.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Adrienne Rabinowitz.

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A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

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