The operators of a telemarketing scam have been banned for life from the extended automobile warranty industry and all outbound telemarketing as a result of a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) lawsuit. The three companies and their owners charged with running the operation have been found guilty of scamming consumers out of millions of dollars through misleading calls in which they claimed to be affiliated with vehicle makers.

Under the terms of the proposed court orders, American Vehicle Protection Corporation (AVP), CG3 Solutions, Inc., and Tony Gonzalez Consulting Group, Inc., along with individual defendants Tony Allen Gonzalez and his brother Charles Gonzalez, will be permanently banned from participating in the extended automobile warranty market and from any further involvement in outbound telemarketing.

AVP was charged with violating the FTC Act and the Telemarketing Sales Rule in February 2022. The company made unsolicited calls in which it deceptively claimed their products, which cost thousands of dollars, offered “bumper to bumper” protection. The company also misled consumers by claiming to be affiliated with vehicle makers and called many consumers on the FTC’s Do Not Call List.

“Today’s order banning five defendants from the industry and imposing a monetary judgment of $6.6 million continues the Commission’s aggressive crackdown on telemarketing fraud,” said Samuel Levine, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.

The proposed court orders also include a monetary judgment of $6.6 million, which is largely suspended based on the defendants’ inability to pay. If the defendants are found to have lied to the FTC about their financial status, the full judgment would be immediately payable.

The case against Kole Consulting Group, Inc., and its owner and manager, Daniel Kole, will continue.

The stipulated final orders, approved by a 3-0-1 vote with Commissioner Christine S. Wilson not participating, will have the force of law when signed by the District Court judge. The staff attorneys on the case were Harold Kirtz, Hans Clausen, and Chris Gleason of the FTC’s Southeast Region.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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