Amerilife Financial Group / Advance Fee Loan Scam
My wife and I were desperate for cash (with poor credit) and applied for a few online "pay day" loans in July of 2008. Someone must have found my information on the internet, they contacted me and told me they could get me a loan for $5000 thru a 'private lender'.
My wife and I discussed this and decided we should move forward. I contacted the "loan officer" the next day, the name she gave me was Pamela Steeles and the contact number for her company 'Amerilife Financial Group' was [protected].
She informed me that since my credit was poor, she would need $787.50 to be wired to the 'lender' up front for the first couple months payments (covering Aug - Sept). I did not have that kind of cash available until I got paid the following week, Pamela got pushy and told me this was a one time chance at this private lender, I was kind of apprehensive, but we really needed the cash, so we decided to borrow the money from a relative.
My wife even contacted the so-called company and had a tough time getting someone in 'customer service' to give her a valid website, we found it, in addition to the documents Pamela sent us previously made this seem like a valid company.
She told me to wire the money using Money Gram instead of Western Union (maybe WU is onto the scam??) She wanted me to contact her from the line in Walmart, she would 'walk me thru the process', she also insisted I use the 'red form' at Money Gram (not sure why this was either)
We went to a Walmart near our house and used Money Gram to wire the money to a person in Ajax, Canada (Pamela claimed this was the lender) by the name of Lance F Letrelle.
Pamela stayed on the phone with me up until the money was wired, she needed the confirmation number, she said we would have our $5000 loan sent to our checking account the following day by 2pm, it never came and now we realize we were scammed, we just don't want this to happen to anybody else in the same situation as us.
We now are out almost $800 (on top of owing our relative the money he lent us), please be aware of scams like this that prey on people with bad credit that can't get loans anyplace else.
The fax number Pamela gave me was [protected], she said she was unable to email anything to me, the more I think about this, the more foolish and pissed off I feel, because I fell for it, and because people like this exist. The address on the faxed paperwork was:
Amerilife Financial Group
405-8400 Normandale Lake Blvd
Bloomington, MN 55437
Just a follow-up to this on-going story, I was contacted today by a "Sr Loan Officer" from Amerilife Financial Group, his name was Ken Miller, he called my home phone and left a message. The incoming number was "unavailable" (big surprise there), he left the same number [protected] X-512, I contacted him later in the day.
He said he understood I had not received my loan yet, I told him that was correct, he said due to my 'poor credit' he needed another $787.50 for me to receive my $5K, I told him I was onto him and his companies scam, I have contacted the FBI, the BBB and also the FCC, I lost my temper big time and by the time I looked down at my phone, he was gone.
I hope this helps somebody else