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Anti-scammy Sammy

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There’s former Van Halen front man Sammy Hagar, NFL legend Slingin’ Sammy Baugh, and the incomparable Sammy Davis, Jr. All notable in their own right, but did they win back $586 million for defrauded consumers? We didn’t think so. That’s why we have another pick for the Sammy Hall of Fame.

FTC attorney Karen Dodge and FTC Midwest Region team members Joannie Wei, Elizabeth Scott, and Doug McKenney were just honored with Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals, also know as Sammies, for negotiating the historic $586 million settlement with Western Union. Thanks to the work of the team and other FTC colleagues – and in cooperation with staffers from the Department of Justicehundreds of thousands of consumers who lost money through fraud-induced money transfers will be getting refunds.

The FTC alleged that Western Union facilitated consumer fraud through its global money transfer system. According to the complaint, the company was aware that fraud was afoot, but looked the other way and profited from the wrongdoing of scammers, including some of its own agents. In addition to negotiating $586 million in consumer refunds, the team reached a groundbreaking settlement that will change how Western Union does business.

The Service to America Medals were created in 2002 by the nonpartisan, nonprofit Partnership for Public Service. Among the highest honors a federal employee can receive, the Sammies acknowledge excellence in government. Karen and the Midwest Region team were the winners in the Homeland Security and Law Enforcement category.

Congratulations to our FTC colleagues.

Tagged with: fraud, money transfer
Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit


Thank you for the work you do.

Way to go, you guys! Thanks for your hard -- and meaningful -- work on behalf of the American public. So glad it hasn't slipped by unnoticed.

Congrats on a job well done. Now if you could only do something about all the phone spammers.

WOW ! Very nice job ~~

Congratulations to all. Great work.

I just got the biggest kick out of the"Sammy" awards. I think it is a fantastic idea.

I just received one of those checks. I thought it was a trick. Thanks.

This is what we've been waiting for. Great job.

That is awesome! Congratulations to those Sammie winners and thank you for your hard work and service for American consumers.

Congratulations...U guys! Harrah for workers like U who do SO MUCH GOOD for the American citizen/consumer. U deserve the awards U rec'd and the American peoples GRATITUDE!

This has been a long time coming. Job well done. I'll break the news to the President.

It's nice to see government function as it should for a change... Like others, I would like to see something similar with all the phone scamming, including unsolicited calls to cell phones!!!


It is reassuring to know there are people who have the authority to change things looking out for out best interest. Thank you.

Thank you for all you do. I was a victim of a scam with Western Union involvement. I've submitted the claim paperwork to gilardi attorney office. Do you know when the refund will start?

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