McGraw

CHARLESTON - Almost a month after filing suit, State Attorney General Darrell McGraw reached a temporary agreement IGIA, Inc., that provides the company will cease doing business in the state.

Attorney General McGraw sued IGIA on Dec. 14 in Kanawha Circuit Court, alleging that the company violated state laws in connection with the sale and marketing of the vacuum cleaners that it offered for sale under the names Windstorm, Singer Lazer Storm, and Milinëx Power Storm.

The commercials allegedly appeared on the TV Guide channel promising a "buy one, get one free" deal.

The lawsuit adds that the vacuums were advertised over the Internet, asking for three monthly installments totaling $119.85, the lawsuit says.

Also, that the advertisements claimed purchasers would get a second vacuum, a Wet-Vac and steamer accessories for free.

However, McGraw claims that when consumers called to order and were asked by an automated system how many vacuums he or she wanted, it would double the amount. McGraw says people who ordered one were charged for two and people who ordered two were charged for four, with no way to change the order.

He adds that IGIA did not provide refunds when the complaints started, and that the Federal Trade Commission sued IGIA subsidiary Tactica International in 2004. The subsequent consent decree forced it to pay $300,000 in civil penalties and provide prompt refunds when requested.

Judge Louis Bloom was assigned the case.

The agreement, reached Jan. 17, also requires IGIA to provide McGraw with the names of all state consumers who ordered merchandise from IGIA in the past four years.

The suit was filed by Deputy Attorney General Jill Miles, the head of McGraw's Consumer Protection Division. She adds that IGIA was sued by the Federal Trade Commission for similar business practices of those alleged by McGraw.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 06-C-2643

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