Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has sued several related companies that allegedly advertised Iraqi currency (Dinars) on the Internet but failed to fulfill orders from customers.

Over the past two years, when the defendants received complaints from customers, they allegedly changed the name of their companies, the office address or website and continued their practice of selling Iraqi currency without filling prior orders, the suit charges.

The lawsuit also alleges that the defendants failed to obtain a required Illinois license to engage in the business of selling or exchanging foreign currency for compensation. The Transmitters of Money Act requires all such sellers to be licensed by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. None of the defendants is properly licensed.

These companies have illegally taken advantage of consumers who are interested in investing in foreign currency, Madigan said. We are working to protect consumers from this conduct.

Madigan filed the suit against:

1. United World Exchange, Inc., doing business as US Dinar,
2. US Foreign Exchange, Inc., an Illinois LLC doing business as USFX,
3. Mid America Trade, an Illinois LLC,
4. US Trade, LLC, a dissolved Nevada corporation,
5. US Dinar, LLC, a dissolved Illinois corporation,
6. Samir Altaeh, also known as Samir Al-Tayeh, individually and as President of U.S. Foreign Exchange, US Trade and US Dinar, and also in his capacity as a manager of Mid America Trade and as agent for United World Exchange, and
7. Joseph Beaudry, individually and as President of United World Exchange.

Since 2006, Madigans Consumer Fraud Bureau has received 42 complaints against the various defendants. The Better Business Bureau has received more than 160 complaints concerning the various defendants in the past year.

I encourage consumers to act carefully and be wary of companies that advertise a hot investment opportunity, Madigan added.

Madigans lawsuit asks the court to prohibit the defendants from engaging in the business of advertising or selling foreign currency in Illinois and seeks restitution for those consumers who have not received their orders from defendants.

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