I have beaten Merchants' Credit Guide Co., again!
When I was first assaulted by a demand letter from MCGC dated June 10, 2005 for a debt I didn't owe and never incurred, knowing this had to be some sort of scam I searched the Internet and found this site. I couldn't believe the extent of this outrage so put on my battle armor, picked up my lance, and charged full tilt.
I fired off a letter to "Ken Hughes" telling him to tuck his collection, that I was not paying, was not a sucker, and was coming after him. I copied that letter to the attorneys general of Illinois, where MCGC is headquartered, Massachusetts where I reside, and two copies to the New York AG, both his office in Albany and in Hauppauge where MCGC has an operation.
Next I created a website to document this fraud and my efforts both present and to come:
And finally, I sent a check for $50 to the owner of Ripoffreport.com, because without this website I would never have realized the extent and reach of this scam! (If you appreciate reading this, remember, it takes a lot of someone's time and money to make and keep this site available as a critical resource to us: as the owner and administrator of two websites of my own and a discussion group, believe me I know!)
Do not be intimidated by Ken Hughes and his cabal -- you too can beat them!
Don't let them get away with this any longer -- NO MORE VICTIMS!
On Aug. 15th I received a response from the Illinois AG's office, informing me that my "complaint has been settled to your satisfaction." Attached to the AG's letter was MCGC's response to the AG signed by "Scott A. Ross" stating: "Seeing that Mr. Ford is disputing this debt we contacted our client requesting validation of this account. When our client was unable to provide documents, we closed our file. Mr. Ford will not hear from Merchants' again in reference to this debt."
Then he went on to expound on what a wonderfully legitimate business MCGC runs and that my charges to the contrary notwithstanding, "strongly dispute any claims that we are engaged in any illegal activity." He no doubt intentionally noted a website which I'd never cited [RipOff.Com -- !] in a blatant attempt at misdirection. (MCGC wouldn't want any AG visiting this website -- which in fact I cited -- would they.)
The Illinois AG's office requested that I return a form indicating that I was satisfied with this "resolution." Instead, I wrote back informing them that I wouldn't be satisfied until this scam was terminated and that I would pursue it until that termination was accomplished.
Do not be intimidated by MCGC! YOU CAN BEAT THEM TOO AND HELP ME TAKE THEM DOWN!
On Jan. 4, 2006 I finally received a response from the New York attorney general's Bureau of Consumer Frauds and Protection -- again informing me of a "resolution" of my complaint. Attached was the response from MCGC, again signed by "Scott A. Ross" -- a reproduction -- word for word -- of his response to Illinois AG Lisa Madigan's Consumer Protection Division -- right down to again referencing the website I never cited! I have responded to the NY AG's office this morning requesting that a greater investigation be launched.
All documentation of my efforts is available on my website in PDF format.
I have also contacted many in the media and am beginning to find a spark of interest. My girlfriend, a syndicated columnist in Massachusetts, wrote a column, "Consumer warning: Beware bogus collection notices," which appeared in newspapers around the state last mid-August (available on my website).
Don't let Merchants' Credit Guide Co. intimidate you -- fight back! You can beat this scam too!
And send a check, whatever you feel it's worth and can afford, to help maintain this website. (I have no connection to it but our mutual correspondence here.) I'd have been lost for a starting point had Ripoffreport.com not been here when I first went looking for information, when I needed it. I'm sure you must feel the same. I hope it's still here if I'm ever assaulted again by a suspected criminal enterprise.
Fight back! You can win!