Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contact: Cara Smith
312-814-3118
877-844-5461 (TTY)

csmith@atg.state.il.us
December 20, 2006

MADIGAN SUES TV REPAIRMAN THAT ALLEGEDLY DELIVERED DECEPTION, RATHER THAN RECEPTION, TO CUSTOMERS

Chicago - Attorney General Lisa Madigan today filed a lawsuit in Bond County Circuit Court alleging that a Bond County man collected approximately $5,015 in down payments from consumers for TV repairs and parts and then failed to perform the work or to deliver the parts.

Madigan’s lawsuit names as the defendant Mark Meadows, doing business as Affordable TV and Big Screen Express, located at 406 Academy in Pocahontas.

Since 2004, Madigan’s Consumer Fraud Bureau has received 14 consumer complaints against Affordable TV and Big Screen Express. In these complaints, consumers allege that Meadows agreed to repair their televisions and collected down payments for parts and repairs, but then either failed to begin the work, deliver the parts or complete the repairs in a professional manner. Meadows allegedly failed to refund $5,015 in down payments to consumers who have complained to Madigan’s office.

“This case is part of my office’s effort to enforce the consumer protection laws to ensure that consumers are not taken by unscrupulous business people,” said Madigan.

Madigan’s lawsuit describes the problems that consumers encountered after entering into contracts with Meadows for television repair.  As described in the complaint, Meadows often went to consumers’ homes to repair their televisions.  While there, he allegedly collected down payments ranging from $25 to $450.  At that point, he allegedly told consumers that he did not have a part that he needed.  In some cases, he would then leave and never return with the part or make any effort to repair the televisions.  In other instances, Meadows took the consumers’ televisions to his business and either never returned the televisions or returned them unrepaired.

Madigan’s lawsuit charges Meadows with violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act and asks the court to prohibit Meadows from engaging in the television repair business and from further violating Illinois’ consumer protection laws. The lawsuit seeks a civil penalty of $50,000 and additional penalties of $50,000 for each violation found to have been committed with the intent to defraud. Finally, Madigan’s lawsuit asks the court to order Meadows to pay restitution to consumers and to pay all costs for the prosecution and investigation of this case.

Assistant Attorney General Deborah Sterling-Scott is handling the case for Madigan’s Consumer Protection Division.

Consumers who believe that they have been a victim of repair fraud or any other consumer fraud can download a complaint form at www.IllinoisAttorneyGeneral.gov/consumers or call the Attorney General’s Consumer Fraud Hotline at one of the following numbers:

Springfield: 1-800-243-0618
TTY: 1-877-844-5461
Spanish Language Hotline: 1-866-310-8398

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