Attorney General Moody's Week In Review
This week, we warned Floridians about the 12 Schemes of Christmas. It’s a busy time of year for shoppers, retailers and delivery companies as millions of gifts are sold, shipped and delivered. It’s also a busy season for scammers concocting schemes to exploit the holiday demand.
Our 12 Schemes of Christmas Consumer Alert highlights some of these schemes and provides tips to help consumers avoid falling prey. From 12 shoulder surfers spying on your ATM transaction, to five porch pirates stealing packages off your doorstep—our warning raises awareness about different ways holiday shoppers may be targeted.
To check out the complete list of all these holiday season schemes, visit MyFloridaLegal.com/ConsumerAlert.
While you are visiting our website, you can also download our 2022 Holiday Consumer Protection Guide. This guide is full of additional tips and resources designed to help you avoid online shopping scams, fake charities and more.
By arming yourself with these free resources, you will be better prepared to avoid holiday scams, and help us build a Stronger, Safer Florida.
Attorney General Moody Urges FCC to Adopt Measures to Cut Down Illegal Robotexts
Attorney General Ashley Moody, in a coalition of 51 attorneys general, is urging the Federal Communications Commission to adopt stronger protections for consumers against illegal robotexts. In 2021, the FCC received more than 15,000 consumer complaints about unwanted texts and the Federal Trade Commission listed text messages as the second most common contact method for scams behind only robocalls. Last year, consumers reported losing $131 million through fraudulent texts. The attorneys general support the FCC’s proposed action that aims to help cut down the intrusive messages by requiring mobile-wireless providers to block texts from invalid, unassigned, or unused numbers, as well as numbers on a Do Not Originate list.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “Illegal robotexts are on the rise, with many consumers receiving unwanted messages that may contain malicious links. To combat scammers, I am standing with my fellow attorneys general in support of the FCC’s proposal to require that phone service providers block messages appearing to be from invalid, unallocated or unused numbers.” More.
Attorney General Moody Calls on Apple and Google to Correct TikTok Age Rating
Attorney General Ashley Moody called on Apple and Google to take immediate action and correct the application store age ratings of TikTok by the end of the year. Attorney General Moody and 14 other state attorneys general state that the change will help parents protect their children from being exposed to harmful content online.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “While our investigation into TikTok continues, it is important that action is taken now to better protect children from harmful content they might encounter on this China-owned social media platform. If TikTok isn’t banned outright, app stores should at the very least increase the age rating on the TikTok app to ensure parents know that this social media platform is not appropriate for users under the age of 17.” More.
VIDEO CONSUMER ALERT: Scammers May Prey on Holiday Shoppers Searching for High-Demand Toys
Attorney General Ashley Moody is issuing a Consumer Alert warning holiday shoppers about the trending toy scam. Each holiday season, there are popular toys that many wish to purchase, but may be hard to locate in stores. Scammers monitor these trends and may create fake sale offers for these items, or attempt to send counterfeit toys—or no toys at all—bilking consumers of money and potentially stealing personal information.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “As parents search for the most popular toys of the holiday season, scammers may set up fake websites and advertise too-good-to-be-true offers. Often, the advertisements contain links to malware and the toys for sale may be counterfeit. For more information about how to spot and avoid this scheme, check out our latest Consumer Alert.” More.
Man Faces Life Sentence for Felony Human Trafficking Charges and Manslaughter
Attorney General Ashley Moody’s Office of Statewide Prosecution charged a human trafficker with manslaughter and human trafficking causing great bodily harm, permanent disability or permanent disfigurement. The defendant, Daniel Rhodes, faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement arrested Rhodes, who used several women’s drug addictions to coerce the victims into engaging in sexual activity for Rhode’s financial benefit. According to an FDLE investigation, Rhodes also injected one of the victims with a drug concoction that included fentanyl, resulting in the woman’s overdose death.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “This monster injected his victims with drugs and coerced them to perform sex acts for his financial gain. An FDLE investigation also revealed that he caused the death of one woman, by injecting her with a fentanyl-laced drug mixture. My prosecutors will aggressively pursue this case to make sure this vile human trafficker pays for his crimes.” More.
This week, Attorney General Ashley Moody thanked agency managers from across the state for exemplary work this year during the 2022 Office of the Attorney General Annual Statewide Managers Meeting.
Attorney General Moody presenting the Trish Conners Award to Special Counsel and Chief of Complex Enforcement Scott Palmer of the Antitrust Division. The Trish Conners Award is given to a lawyer who exemplifies excellence, professionalism and demonstrates dedication to the mission of the Department of Legal Affairs.
Attorney General Moody presenting the first Chesterfield H. Smith, Jr. Mentoring Award to Chief Assistant Attorney General Hagerenesh Simmons of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit Southern Region. This award is handed out to an individual who provides outstanding professional development of future leaders with the agency.
Attorney General Moody with the managers of the Florida Attorney General’s Office outside the Florida Historic Capitol building.
The Florida Attorney General’s Office Tallahassee employees in the Collins Building holding the annual Holiday Door Decorating Contest. This year’s theme involved holiday traditions from countries around the world. The Citizen Services division took first place.
Attorney General Moody speaking at a groundbreaking ceremony for the future site of the Bernie McCabe Second District Court of Appeal Courthouse in St. Petersburg.
Attorney General Moody congratulating Communications Specialist Cameron Paul for graduating from Florida State University with a master’s degree in Applied American Politics and Policy.