The Federal Trade Commission has filed a complaint in U.S. District Court to halt the misleading claims of a defendant who allegedly deceived consumers by using multiple websites to impersonate federal consumer assistance agencies or pretend to be affiliated with them.  Through the websites, the defendant solicited indebted consumers and referred them to companies selling mortgage, tax, and debt relief services with promises that their debts would be substantially reduced or eliminated, according to the FTC complaint.

As part of its continuing crackdown on scams that target consumers in financial distress, the FTC charged Christopher Mallett with multiple violations of the Federal Trade Commission Act for misrepresenting his affiliations with federal agencies, misrepresenting that the services advertised on his websites were government-approved, and making deceptive debt relief claims.  The FTC further charged that his deceptive claims violated the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule and Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule.