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For Immediate Release
February 21, 2006
Media Contact:
Kevin Enright 410-576-6357

CONSUMER PROTECTION DIVISION ISSUES CEASE AND DESIST ORDER AGAINST SELLER OF OPRAH WINFREY SHOW TRIP PACKAGE


Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that his Consumer Protection Division has issued a cease and desist order requiring a seller of a bus trip package to pay restitution that exceeds $30,000.00. Terrance Hawkins of Temple Hills, Maryland, t/a Royal Travel Group and Royal Stages, Inc., collected deposits from more than 90 consumers for a bus trip package that included tickets to The Oprah Winfrey Show, hotel reservations, casino rebates, and bus transportation to Chicago and Detroit. Mr. Hawkins cancelled the trip, but he failed to refund the money that he had been paid by consumers.

The Consumer Protection Division determined that Hawkins violated the Maryland Consumer Protection Act by selling bus trip packages that he failed to provide and by failing to refund customers’ payments. According to the producer of The Oprah Winfrey Show, it does not provide large blocks of tickets. Accordingly, Hawkins never had the capability of providing the trip he was promising to consumers. The Division’s cease and desist order immediately bars Hawkins from accepting deposits from customers prior to providing the promised goods and services.

“ Consumers who pay for a trip that is later cancelled have the right to a refund" said Attorney General Curran.

Consumers who have not received refunds of deposits they paid to Terrance Hawkins for a trip to The Oprah Winfrey Show in Chicago and to casinos in Detroit may call the Consumer Protection Division at 410-576-6592. A hearing on civil penalties has been scheduled for Tuesday, March 28, 2006 at 9:30 a.m. at the Office of Administrative Hearings, 11101 Gilroy Road, Hunt Valley, MD 21031.

   

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