Beware `Pyramid’ scheme |

Beware `Pyramid’ scheme

Ninth District Attorney Mac Myers is warning consumers of a new scheme based on old relics. “Pyramid” schemes that are being promoted as gifting programs have been surfacing recently in Garfield County.

The schemes have names like “Women Empowering Women,” Private Gifting,” “Gift Givers,” “The Original Dinner Party” and “Garden Club.”

A pyramid scheme is defined as any program utilizing a pyramid or chain process by which a participant in the program gives more than $50 to a group with the expectation that money will later be received as additional members are recruited into the group. The programs generally do not produce or sell any goods or services. The schemes are illegal in Colorado.

“The longer these schemes exist, the greater the likelihood that a large number of people will lose a lot of money,” Myers wrote. “Of particular concern is the possibility that some participants in these schemes go into significant debt by obtaining loans and even cash advances from their credit card accounts in order to join.”

Participants in some current pyramid schemes in Colorado have been falsely claiming that their programs are sanctioned by law enforcement agencies, Myers said.

Anyone with information concerning pyramid schemes should contact their local law enforcement agency.

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