AG Cooper secures refunds for victims of computer repair shops

AG Cooper secures refunds for victims of computer repair shops

By / State News / الأربعاء, 03 آب/أغسطس 2016 04:00

RALEIGH, N.C. : July 25th, 2016 - Consumers who took their computers in for repairs and didn’t get what they paid for will finally get court-ordered refunds, Attorney General Roy Cooper announced last week.
Mark Edward White, the former operator of computer repair shops that took money for work they failed to complete including Raleigh Geeks and Wilmington Geeks, will pay $20,000 in refunds to consumers and investigative costs under a settlement reached with Cooper’s office.
“Breaking promises and keeping customers’ property and money is no way to do business,” Cooper said. “Frustrated consumers paid for repairs that never happened or weren’t done right, and they deserve their money back.”
In June 2015, Cooper won a judgment that permanently barred White, co-defendant Timothy Staie, and their associates from the computer repair businesses in North Carolina and ordered defendants to pay refunds to certain consumers. Cooper’s Consumer Protection Division recently got reports that the defendants had started a computer repair business in Wilmington in violation of that court order and began investigating.
Last week, Wake County Superior Court Judge Donald W. Stephens approved a settlement with White which includes immediate payment of $10,425.53 in refunds to consumers wronged by his businesses plus an additional $9.574.47 to Cooper’s Consumer Protection Division to cover the costs of investigation. In the coming weeks, the Consumer Protection Division will reach out to consumers who are entitled to money back with information on how to claim refunds.
 Defendant Staie is currently under a civil contempt order. At Cooper’s request, Superior Court Judge A. Graham Shirley held Staie in contempt last month and ordered him to report to jail until he complies with the judgment, including ceasing to run any computer or electronics repair business. Staie has failed to appear.
The court granted the contempt order based on information indicating that Staie and his associates were operating computer repair businesses under the names Wilmington Geeks and Paradise Cellular Repair Center. Cooper’s office has received multiple complaints about each business, including reports of faulty merchandise, failure to complete repair work, and refusal to honor a warranty. At the request of the Attorney General’s office, officers with the Wilmington Police Department confirmed that Staie was working at Wilmington Geeks, which violated the 2015 court order.
Wilmington Geeks is now under new ownership and the Attorney General’s office is working to resolve pending complaints against it. Consumers who have experienced problems with Wilmington Geeks or Paradise Cellular Repair Center are encouraged to file a complaint with the Consumer Protection Division at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or online at www.ncdoj.gov
Staie and White previously operated Raleigh Geeks, Caveman Computers, ProTech Computers, and Fuquay Computer Center with locations in Apex, Fuquay-Varina, Garner, and Raleigh.
When White and Staie operated in the Raleigh area, the Consumer Protection Division received 69 complaints from consumers who lost money, personal information, and sometimes their computer equipment. Students lost schoolwork, families lost photos that held important sentimental value, and professionals were unable to continue working without access to information saved on their computers. Cooper’s office was able to return 37 computers and other electronic devices to their rightful owners.
Source: NC Department of Justice.

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