October 8, 2004
PROTECTION DIVISION ISSUES CEASE AND DESIST ORDER AGAINST LOAN
General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that his Consumer
Protection Division has issued a cease and desist order
against a loan company for offering to provide loans without a
license and taking advance payments without providing loans to
Division has charged Justin Patterson and A1 Financial with advertising
and offering loans to consumers without a license,
accepting loan applications and taking advance payments from
consumers without providing the loan or refunds of the payments.
its address as 1539 Merrit Boulevard, Baltimore, Maryland 21222,
but the money consumers paid was forwarded to Georgia.
Division further alleged that Patterson and A1 Financial set
up what appeared to be a Maryland loan company, with a Maryland
business address and telephone number, and solicited consumers
through advertisements placed in regional classified ad papers
in other states. Consumers responded to the advertisements,
out loan applications, provided personal information and sent
in amounts ranging from $500 to $2000, to receive the loans.
The charges allege that the consumers never received the loans
of the deposits.
Division’s ex parte order bars Justin Patterson and A1
Financial from acting or offering to act as a loan company and
requires Patterson and A1 Financial to repay all of the money that
it took from consumers for these advance fees.
This company and this individual are taking advantage of consumers
who are in financial trouble and vulnerable," said Curran. "When
consumers see ads for fast cash and consumer loans in classified
ads, consumers need to be aware that they could be the target of
scam artists." Curran said consumers should be wary of anyone
asking for money in advance in order to process the consumer’s
loan. If the consumers are not dealing with a lending institution
that they know, they should check to make sure that the lender
that they are dealing with is licensed with the state Commissioner
of Financial Regulation: (410) 230-6100.