Harry Tanner with American Precious Metals, Andrea Tanner and Sam J. Goldman agreed to pay a $24 million settlement after FTC charged they tricked customers to purchase high risk precious metals on credit without disclosing the risks associated with these purchases, according to the Federal Trade Commission’s article. This settlement stems from an FTC investigation that started in May, 2011.
The FTC complaint alleged that consumers were unaware that their investments were financed and loans were taken out for up to 80% of the price of the precious metals. The persons who invested in these precious metals were also unaware that their investments were subject to equity calls; to prevent their investments from being liquidated, they might have to pay more money.
While the investigation and litigation has progressed, the court barred the defendants from misrepresenting the risk and earning potential of their investment offers and required clear disclosure of all the total costs and risks before consumers agreed to invest, pending resolution of the case.
In addition to the settlement, Mr. Tanner and Mr. Goldman are also permanently banned from marketing any investment opportunities. Mrs. Tanner is banned from marketing precious metals investments. In addition, all three of them must fully and honestly disclose all material terms about any goods or services they offer consumers in the future and they cannot disclose or benefit from their future customers’ personal information.
If you or someone you know has lost money as a result of an investment, please contact Richard Frankowski at 205-747-1903 to discuss your potential legal remedies.