North Carolinians to get refund checks from pyramid scheme

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Attorney General Roy Cooper says North Carolinians who lost money to a pyramid scheme will get a total of more than $445,000 in refund checks.

A statement from Cooper’s office on Wednesday said the checks are being mailed by the Federal Trade Commission to 33,621 North Carolina consumers who bought into the Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing scheme but lost money.

Nationwide, 285,361 checks totaling more than $3.7 million are going to victims of the scheme following a court-approved settlement.

The statement said FHTM operated a pyramid scheme out of Kentucky that recruited more than 350,000 participants between 2009 and 2012. FHTM claimed participants could earn thousands of dollars a year by buying into the operation to sell satellite television services, home security systems, beauty products and other goods and services.