Former Niagara Falls woman charged in debt collection fraud case | Crime News

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A former Niagara Falls woman was charged Thursday with conspiring to defraud thousands of people across the country in a debt collection operation based in Erie and Niagara counties.

Charged was Angela Burdorf, 42, of New Port Richey, Fla., who operated debt collection company Vantage Point Services in Amherst and owned payment processors Payment Management Solutions in Amherst and Solidified Payment Solutions in Niagara Falls.

She was charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, 16 counts of wire fraud and conspiracy to defraud the United States.

This is not the first time that Burdorf has encountered legal problems due to debt collection.

In 2018, a federal judge permanently barred her and two other debt collectors from the debt collection business due to practices that violate federal and state laws. To settle the civil lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission and the New York State Attorney General’s office, the judge also ordered the three to pay a total of $27 million in restitution and damages.

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Here are snapshots of some cases against debt collectors that the state attorney general’s office, the Federal Trade Commission, and other law enforcement agencies have prosecuted over the past decade.

In the current indictment, a grand jury alleged that Burdorf and unnamed co-conspirators operated debt collection agencies that lied to consumers and threatened them with arrest, and collected debts that had already been paid or for amounts greater than what was actually due.

During a 22-day period in April 2017, debt collectors run by Burdorf and the others obtained about $69,000 in payouts from their victims, the grand jury heard.

Burdorf and his co-conspirators also operated several credit card payment processing companies that were used to collect payments from consumers.

She and the others avoided paying taxes on the payments they received by transferring money to other businesses and falsely claiming the payments were business expenses, the grand jury alleged.

The indictment identified these companies as being involved in the scheme: United Mediation Group; payment management solutions; Solidified Payment Solutions LLC; Check and credit services; Viewpoint services; Northern District Resolution Services, LLC; M&B Associates; legal advisory services; and Bonafied Payment Solutions, Inc.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office is seeking to forfeit $69,004 from Burdorf in connection with the case.

In the 2018 civil case, debt collectors Burdorf, Joseph Ciffa and Gregory MacKinnon, both of Grand Island, were barred from the industry. Authorities then said MacKinnon owned Vantage Point Services and Ciffa owned Bonified Payment Solutions Inc.

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