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AG alleges VCPA violation by employment companies

Attorney General Bill Mims is accusing three related companies of defrauding job-seekers in Hampton Roads.

The complaint in Norfolk Circuit Court alleges that Virginia Employment Services Inc., Virginia Personnel Inc. and New Beginnings Inc. violated the Virginia Consumer Protection Act. They charged consumers hundreds of dollars in “membership” fees and promised “guaranteed” jobs but offered little or no assistance in finding employment, according to the complaint.

James or Karla O’Leary served as principals for each of the companies.

Another O’Leary company, Jobs Plus Inc., settled with the Norfolk commonwealth’s attorney’s office in 2006 after the office alleged a VCPA violation. The office collected complaints against the other three companies and turned them over to the AG’s office in March.

The AG’s lawsuit seeks reimbursement of the membership fee each consumer paid, typically at least $365, and reimbursement for overdraft fees and other credit card charges customer incurred as a result of unauthorized charges by the company.

By Alan Cooper

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