Firstline Security, Bogus Billing

June 2, 2009 11:36:25 PM PDT
The Better Business Bureau has nothing but bad things to say about Firstline Security, a company Action News first started investigating early last year.We've learned this bankrupt company is again sending bills to Valley customers who say Firstline has given them nothing but headaches.

A letter has been arriving in mailboxes around the Valley this week. In it, former customers of Firstline Security are being told that a number of them have not been billed in quite some time and charges are resuming. Only problem is, for many the alarms never worked. And after not hearing a word since the company filed for bankruptcy, many thought the nightmare had ended.

Signs advertising Firstline Security are still not hard to find in Fresno ... neither are fuming customers. Robin Rhynes couldn't believe what she was reading when she opened her mail on Monday.

Robin Rhynes said, "It was total disbelief, I mean the first thing I said is how can a company that's already been exposed in the news for fraud go back and try it again."

We first discovered Firstline last February when frustrated customers started calling us wanting answers. They were sold the systems by door to door salesmen, usually college students.

The students were told they would be part of a reality show and one ambitious salesperson would win a million dollars. It never happened.

What did happen is Firstline Security cleared out corporate headquarters in Utah and went under.

The Better Business Bureau says they are still hearing from consumers after the company was supposed to be out of business.

Cindy Dudley said, "They are not licensed to do business in the state of California. Their own attorney said they would not be operating in California and that there wouldn't be any more reports of students being promised reality shows."

In the latest collection attempt, former customers are being told to expect monthly fees to again be drafted from their bank accounts or credit cards. Customers who have new credit cards or bank accounts are being asked to call in and update their payment information. Rhynes can't figure out how Firstline feels they can charge her for a service she says she never received.

"I sit here and wonder, my alarms still in there now. It's still lit up but never has worked. I mean what can you do with it," said Rhynes.

We tried numerous times to contact Firstline Security. A recording asks for account information and will not transfer you to an operator. The billing company listed on the letter only has an answering machine that asks callers to leave a message. The Better Business Bureau says both companies have an "F" rating.

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