November 18, 2014 Press Conference - Williams, Scott & Associates
NEW YORK, NY - Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and George Venizelos, the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI"), announced today the unsealing of a complaint charging Williams, Scott & Associates ("WSA"), a debt collection company based in Norcross, Georgia, its owner John Todd Williams, and six of its employees - Benita Cannedy, Rudy James, Arthur Cook, Christopher Lenyszyn, Clark Smith, and Titus Mcdowell - with conspiracy to commit wire fraud in connection with a nationwide debt collection scheme that targeted more than 6,000 victims throughout the United States. As alleged, the defendants contacted consumers whose debt WSA had purchased, and tried to trick and coerce them into making payments to WSA by making false threats and telling a host of lies. Among those lies were that WSA was part of a federal task force and that warrants would be issued for the consumers' arrests if they failed to make immediate payment to WSA. In total, WSA obtained more than $4.1 million from its victims.