(KMOV) – News 4 Investigative Reporter Chris Nagus talked to victims of a nationwide scam being prosecuted in an unlikely place.
Michael Patrick Sullivan ran several companies and used several different names to lure customers to a deceptive scheme; promising to re-sell unwanted time shares.
US Attorney Steve Wigginton says the rip-off raked in $11 million by luring unsuspecting people over the phone. When angry customers got frustrated, the various timeshare companies would lie to customers telling them they had a buyer.
It went on so long customers couldn’t request charge backs from the credit card companies.
According to court filings, Sullivan had motto, even if that meant lying to make more.
In Las Vegas, there's one home listed for Michael Patrick Sullivan but it was gated so a News 4 crew could not get in.
At least 12 victims live in the Metro East, and that’s why Wigginton decided to prosecute in the St. Louis area. He says Sullivan went to great lengths to disguise the rip-off.
“it was a Georgia company, through a virtual office in Delaware, where activities were actually through a storefront in southern Nevada,” said Wigginton.
One of those storefronts was registered to Hot Girls Entertainment, which didn’t sound like a timeshare company
The business appears to have changed hands, neighbors in the strip mall tell me it’s now an escort service.
Sullivan has pleaded guilty, he will be sentenced in East St. Louis on March 6.