Buffalo, NY (WBEN) Those who bought furntiure from FWS but gave their money before receiving anything now have an ally with some clout. Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is suing the owners of FWS, which went out of business earlier this year.
“This company and its owners operated with a complete disregard for their customers’ hard-earned money,” said Schneiderman. “Many people save for years to make such large purchases, and FWS’s careless practices have left customers out in the cold – with thousands of dollars lost and few options to recover those funds. These unscrupulous business practices ripped off Western New York consumers, and we will hold the perpetrators accountable for this misconduct.”
Schneiderman says when FWS placed an order on behalf of consumers, it required that they make advance payments on the merchandise. FWS, however, did not segregate those payments into a separate account, but spent them. At the time it closed, the Attorney General’s office estimated that FWS had about 700 open orders on which consumers made advance payments of more than $420,000. Since then some consumers were able to obtain the merchandise for which they paid, and others were able to stop payments made by credit cards. Attorney General Schneiderman took legal action on behalf of those consumers who stand to lose their advance payments.
That total ranges from $160,000 to $250,000.
Schneiderman also seeks to prevent Grimaldi and Wanat from operating another business in New York unless they first post a $500,000 performance bond. The Attorney General has requested a temporary restraining order preventing FWS and its owners from transferring any funds, or destroying any business records.