August 27, 2003
Sean Caine, 410-576-6357
OFFICE SETTLES WITH 18-YEAR-OLD INTERNET AUCTION SELLER WHO DIDN'T
DELIVER VIDEO GAME SYSTEMS
General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that his Consumer
Protection Division has reached a settlement with Jomar Saddler,
of Cheltenham, Maryland, who offered goods through Internet auctions,
but did not deliver the equipment to consumers who paid him. Most
of the goods sold by Saddler were computer game consoles such as
Playstation 2 and Nintendo GameCube systems. Under the settlement,
Saddler will refund money to the consumers, pay a $5,000 penalty
and $1,000 in costs to the Division, and he must post a surety bond
before engaging in any future Internet auction sales.
Division alleged that Saddler, 18, violated the Maryland Consumer
Protection Act by accepting payments for the video game equipment
and other goods that he sold to consumers via online auctions and
failing to actually supply the purchased goods.
settlement requires Saddler to make full restitution to consumers
who paid him for goods they did not receive. The Division estimates
that dozens of consumers throughout the United States and Canada
are owed a total of approximately $10,000. Saddler is also prohibited
from selling consumer goods via the Internet unless he either posts
a $20,000 surety bond with the Division or provides a letter of
credit or cash deposit in the amount of $20,000, which would be
used to compensate consumers who may be harmed in the future. Saddler
also agreed to pay a civil penalty of $5,000 and $1,000 for the
Division's investigation costs.
should be wary when buying from sellers with whom they are not familiar,"
Attorney General Curran said. "I am pleased that we were able
to get restitution for the buyers in this case."
Attorney General's Web site has information about how to avoid some
of the potential pitfalls of online auctions at www.oag.state.md.us/Consumer/edge99.htm.