Business owners refuse to pay for unauthorized orders placed by St. Charles company

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by Chris Nagus / News 4

KMOV.com

Posted on October 31, 2013 at 10:58 PM

 (KMOV) – News 4 investigated a St. Charles business after reports of automatic orders filled for two business owners without their authorization.  

A café owner said she ordered maps for her company from Premier Impressions Call Center in St. Charles and at first they delivered.

But Kathy Cato said things went south when the company started offering products she didn’t want.

“I said I don’t need tote bags; my customers will not use them. So you were pretty explicit I don’t need this. I told her four times I don’t need those tote bags,” Cato said.

But Cato was billed anyway and because the company already had her bank information on file, they raided her account. She called to complain.

“She said according to this you did authorize it, I said do you have a recording of that. I did not authorize that I want my money back,” said Cato.

Cato said she got a partial refund but is now concerned about other unexplained charges.

“There’s also one on here for $500, I don’t have clue what it’s for. This is $129.55; I don’t know what this is for either.” Cato said. “I thought this is not kosher at all.”

Lori Berra runs an alteration business in St. Charles County. She got a call, but this time the telemarketer claimed to be with her local high school.

“Let me think on it” turned into here’s the bill.

The Better Business Bureau has tracked more than 300 complaints connected to Universal Ad Com - the parent company of Premier Impressions - which operates under different names.

Complaints range from bills for orders never placed - to threats of collection if customers don’t pay.

“I was furious, not so much for me because I knew I was never going to pay them a dime,” said Berra.

In 2010, a Fort Worth newspaper listed the company present as Jim Gildenblatt. Texas police say he was found passed out in his Mercedes with his kids in the back and cocaine reportedly in the front seat.

The 2010 report said Gildenblatt told the office he did about six lines of coke and that he was at a Taylor Swift concert earlier that night.

Employees say orders are confirmed through the company’s quality assurance department.

News 4 received a response from their attorney on Thursday. They claim both women in our story ordered their products - but after disputing the orders they were cancelled - but can’t explain the mystery charges without more information.

The company claims they have suspended or terminated employees in the past that violated proper sales procedures.

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