Telemarketer to pay for Missouri no-call complaints

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. _ The Missouri attorney general's office has announced that it has reached a $100,000 settlement with a Michigan company accused of aggressive telemarketing.

The settlement, announced Friday and filed in the city of St. Louis, resolves complaints that Associated Community Services contacted Missourians registered with the state's No-Call List.

The attorney general's office said consumer complaints go back more than two years and that the company's telemarketers used foul language, repeatedly called Missourians who had asked not to be contacted and would sometimes call multiple times in the same day.

The Southfield, Mich.,-based company in the settlement agreement denies that is has engaged in telemarketing. But the company agreed to pay $50,000 right away, plus $10,000 each month beginning in September. The company also plans to implement new policies to comply with Missouri's No-Call list.

The company must submit to the attorney general's office a written description of the procedures it has implemented to ensure it complies with Missouri law.

The agreement also stipulates that Associated Community Services could be fined up to $2,000 per violation of the settlement and up to $5,000 per violation of Missouri consumer protection laws.

A company representative did not immediately return a call seeking comment on Friday.

The attorney general's office said Associated Community Services is a for-profit company that raises money for charities, such as the Cancer Fund of America, National Children's Leukemia Foundation and various veteran and firefighter charities.