MIAMI (AP) — Florida and federal officials say more than 190 criminal and civil actions have been brought nationwide to combat the rising problem of timeshare resale fraud.
The Federal Trade Commission says complaints about timeshare fraud were more than double in 2012 compared with two years earlier. Miami U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer says Florida is one of the epicenters of the problem because it is a top vacation destination.
The cases usually involve telemarketers who claim to have buyers for timeshares but demand thousands of dollars in upfront payments. The buyers usually don't exist and the fraudsters keep the money.
In the past two years, the Miami U.S. attorney's office has charged 69 people with timeshare fraud in 18 different cases. Nationwide the number of people being prosecuted is at least 184.