Florida men agree to stop sending illegal spam text messages

Sept. 19, 2013 at 2:58 PM

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Sept. 19 (UPI) -- An Illinois federal judge has put out of business two South Florida men accused of sending millions of illegal spam text messages, officials say.

Daniel Pessin, 26, and Jacob Engel, 25, both of Fort Lauderdale, were ordered to pay a $377,321 fine and turn over two frozen bank accounts to the Federal Trade Commission, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported Wednesday.

The men were accused of sending more than 42.5 million spam text messages that allegedly lured recipients to give money and personal information that was used by third parties.

The FTC charged the men's company, Rentbro, sent text messages to millions of consumers informing them they had won $1,000 gift cards to major retailers.

Consumers were guided to a website where they were instructed to provide personal information in order to receive the cards. They were then told they had to sign up for a number of trial offers.

Entering pleas before U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman of the Northern District of Illinois, Pessin and Engel did not admit guilt, but agreed to stop the spam messages.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending Stories
Chelsea Clinton accidentally calls Bernie 'President Sanders'
Watch every star-studded Super Bowl commercial of 2016
Susan Sarandon responds to Piers Morgan criticizing cleavage
Two Virginia Tech students plotted 13-year-old's death, prosecutors said
Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice got classified email on private accounts