Verizon Wireless Gets Injunction Against Telemarketer

Verizon Wireless has obtained a permanent injunction blocking a Miami telemarketer from making automated calls to its customers, the cellular phone company said Thursday.

The injunction comes after Verizon Wireless reached an agreement with All Star Vacations and Marketing Group Inc., which Verizon sued in February, along with another Florida travel company, for illegally soliciting wireless phone customers.

Verizon Wireless, jointly owned by Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) and Vodafone Group PLC (VOD), said more than 500,000 of its customers received telephone calls in Spanish from All Star on behalf of the two travel companies.

The customers were told they had won a trip to one of several resorts and then directed to call a toll-free number to claim the prize.

Verizon Wireless and All Star agreed on the injunction May 24, and the agreement was later entered into New Jersey Superior Court by Judge Robert Reed.

Under the settlement, All Star has paid $5,000 in damages to Verizon Wireless, which will donate the money to Casa de Esperenza, which works to prevent domestic violence in Latino communities.

Meanwhile, Verizon Wireless has amended the lawsuit to include Southeastern Bell Corp. and two of its officers.

Verizon Wireless alleges All Star hired Southeastern to make the telemarketing calls on its behalf, and is seeking damages and a permanent injunction against Southeastern.