Graphics Today/Overtime Sports — Employment Scam
Unfortunately I have recently gotten tangled into the mess that is the Overtime Sports/Graphics Today Lake Forest Scam. About a week ago I was contacted through career builder about a job opportunity. I have recently graduated from college and I am unemployed and pretty desperate to make some cash. The job said it offered both part time and full time work and that they were impressed with my resume. I replied back saying that I was interested. I was then contacted 2 days later from somebody named Michael who described the positions of
"sport supervisor" and "sports director" and told me all of the potential money to be had. All I had to do was write them a 200 word essay explaining why I would be a good fit for them. I sent this in as well and on Friday I received a phone call from "Jay" who gave me an "interview" which consisted of asking me how I get my sports
information. He also explained the jobs. I could tell that there was something fishy because he was very vague. He waited until the end to tell me that it would be $24 a month for the flyers that I would need.
He made it sound like I would need to send in $24 a month for these. He then told me that he needed to talk to his boss about our conversation before hiring me. 10 min later I got a call from "Brian"(who sounded EXACTLY like Jay) he went on and on about how excited they were to have me, how much money I could make, how he
thinks I'm perfect for this job, etc... He also said that the flyers would be about $24 a month. Immediately after we proceeded to go right into a "confirmation" where he taped the conversation. First, he told me that I would need to read my credit card number so that they could charge my flyers (said nothing about the price). Because he said it would only be $24 a month I gave him my number since that is what I thought I would be charged. Then he read out all of the questions extremely fast so that I could barely understand what he was saying. He started out with questions like what is my name, where do I live, the day's date, etc... At this point I didn't think it was a big deal. After this he hit me with this question. "Do you accept the 960 charge for your promotional flyers at 24 CENTS a piece." He went through this so fast I did not even hear the 960. Also he just said "nine-sixty". He did not say dollars or anything about money as he did with the 24 CENTS. I had no idea that they actually planned to charge me for $960 that day. Because the only dollar amount that he discussed with me prior to this conversation was the $24 amount, that is what I thought that I would be charged. I didn't even think of the "nine sixty" and if anything I thought it meant $9.60.
Anyways, at the time I wasn't too worried although something seemed fishy about the whole thing. The next day I checked my Bank statement online and sure enough there was a charge for $960.00 from "Graphics
Today Lake Forest". As a recent college graduate who is jobless and VERY low on money (there is no way I would pay $960 for anything right now) I started to panic. I tried to call Brian back but it just went to voice mail. I left a message demanding to have an explanation. I also got in touch with my bank which said that they
could not do anything until the charge became official. However, I did cancel my current card and got a temporary one. Brian decided to call me back the next day. I lost it at one point cursing, etc... until the
point where I just hung up on him. After this, I received about 10 phone calls and 4 messages within the next 10 minutes from him (he was freaking out) with him telling me how it was impossible for my bank to
do anything, that I would be screwed financially over the next 7 years if I tried to fight this, and that there was nothing that I could do except to talk to him and work out some sort of deal.
Immediately after I contacted the FTC, the BBB, The Attorney General of CA and VA, The Harrisonburg and Lake Forest Police Departments, and [redacted]. I called the number for Graphics Today (different from
the Overtime number) to tell them of my intention to cancel my $960 that they charged me. However, it was none other than Brian who answered the phone for Graphics Today (Surprise, surpise). He was
extremely nervous when I recognized his voice and insisted that he transfer me to his other line. I kept questioning him about this and he kept avoiding the question. I told him that I contacted the FTC, BBB,
Attorney General, and that I had a Lawyer. He again started to freak out and kept telling me to accept the $500 refund in "good faith" that he offered me. I told him I wanted all $960 back. He tried to threaten me again, telling me that no one is better than their financial team and that I was screwed.
I told him that I will not settle for anything less for my money back and that I do not accept the fliers and will ship them right back to him if and when they come in the mail. Right now my bank is doing the best they can to get my money back and the company is under investigation from the FTC, BBB, and Attorney General. I am trying to get the word out to others to watch out for this scam. They target recent college graduates who are desperate for work and deceptively steal money from them.