Attorney General Van Hollen Files Complaint Against Laura Lovrien and Her Businesses Orbital Publishing Group, Inc. and Liberty Publishers Service, Inc.

Nov 26 2014
Attorney General Van Hollen Files Complaint Against Laura Lovrien and Her Businesses Orbital Publishing Group, Inc. and Liberty Publishers Service, Inc.
 

MADISON — Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen filed a consumer protection enforcement action in Dane County against Laura Lovrien, a resident of the State of Oregon, and her periodical subscription businesses Orbital Publishing Group, Inc. and Liberty Publishers Service, Inc.  The lawsuit alleges violations of Wisconsin’s consumer protection laws for engaging in unfair, false, misleading, and deceptive trade practices.  According to the complaint, the defendants send false and misleading mail pieces to induce consumers - including many elderly – into subscribing to fake periodicals, or periodicals for which the defendants, as third-party subscription agents, could not secure subscriptions.

 

The complaint alleges that the defendants’ direct-mail pieces falsely imply that they are associated with the periodical publisher and often offer discounted pricing, when in fact the prices charged by the defendants are significantly higher than that of the publishers. For example, a one-year subscription to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel costs $182 for 52 weeks, yet the defendants’ mail solicitations quote a price of $499.  Nor does the Journal Sentinel accept renewals from a third-party subscription agent.  The complaint further alleges that the defendants have sent completely fake invoices, some for periodicals that do not exist, such as the Madison State Journal.  A copy of the Summons and Complaint is available here.

 

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Lara Sutherlin at the Wisconsin Department of Justice.  The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) aided in the investigation of this matter and referred the case to the Department of Justice.