Consumer Protection or Fraud complaint agency?

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My partner received 2 letters from a collection agency supposedly representing a software company, second one was a Strafanzeige. My partner and I have never had any dealings with this company. We are supposedly to have registered for software support for Open Office (a free program). I researched this software company and their address is the same as the alleged collection agency. It is my understanding that only a court can issue a Strafanzeige. And this collection agency address, being the same as the software company, that was another 'red flag'. I did contact a person knowledgeable about business within Germany and his advice was: this was most likely a scam and to report this company to the authorities. I would like to do this however, to whom should I make this report? I live in Heidelberg and this company is in another state. Is there a Consumer Protection Agency or Frauds Agency at the federal level to which I might make this complaint? Should I notify at the state level and then, which state? The one my partner and I live in? The state of the collection agency?

By the way, in my research, I found many others of which had similar complaints and were told to ignore these letters.

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Consumer protection agency = Verbraucherzentrale

 

In Heidelberg, go to

Stadtbücherei (yes, they sit in the public library)

Poststraße 15

69115 Heidelberg

 

and talk to

Annette Wick

 

Opening times are

Tuesday 10 to 12 a.m.

Wednesday + Thursday 4 to 6 p.m.

 

Sounds totally like a scam. Good luck!

P.S.: About ignoring the letters, this can work, but better check with the Verbraucherzentrale first.

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Thanks for this information. Amazing that there is a Verbraucherzentrale so close to me! I will bring all my research with me and see how the Verbraucherzentrale handles this.

 

The more I research this company the more I realize how many others have been contacted by and scammed by this 'group' (collections and software under the same 'roof')

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You can simply report it to the police. Attempted financial fraud is a crime. The Verbraucherzentrale can publish warnings, but you would have to bring a charge against them with the police.

 

Edit: Legal matters are always "federal". The "Bundesländer" are not like states in the US.

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I visited the Verbraucherzentrale this afternoon and they were most helpful. They have seen this sort of scam before. Their website portal is here http://www.verbraucherzentrale.de/. In visiting the Baden Wüttemberg site there was a link selection for "Medien & Telekommunikation" and a selection for "Abzocke" - "Rip-off". There found was much information about internet scams. At the bottom are a number of links for further information and one link "If you have fallen for the scam..." gives sample letters and good advice in writing to the so-called collection agency and the steps one should take to insure a proper receipt of this letter. (Einschreiben mit Rückschein). This office had some very helpful advice.

 

I shall also look into reporting this to our local police as 'Bonn' suggests.

 

Thanks for the help!

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I have a dispute with a fraudulent insurance agent (details here ) and have a question regarding filing criminal charges. Since most legal insurance companies seem to not cover costs of filing charges (just defending charges filed against you) , I was wondering which is the best way to make sure she is dealt with by the law if guilty. Can one contact the Staatsanwaltschaft directly? Ultimately I just want her to not do this to more unsuspecting clients what she did to me, and get away with it each time. But at the same time, I don't want to end up with the costs myself.

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HI there,
first you have to figure out, which is the regulatory authority for that. In most German states it is the IHK (International Chamber of Trade and Commerce). But in some states it is the local "Gewerbeamt"
Once you have figured that out, you can launch a direct protest to them. Don't hold your breath..but they might do some auditing.
Furthermore you can approach the "Ombudsman". He is actually listed in the "Impressum" (Imprint,disclosure) on their website. That will trigger an investigation and might provide some results...

 

All in all, consumer protection in Germany is unfortunately at the level of some 3rd world countries (and I don't want to insult these countries...sorry ) 

Good luck, Cheerio

 

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Hey there.. 

 

Their Impressum says :

Aufsichtsbehörde gem. §34 d Abs. 1 GewO ist:
Industrie- und Handelskammer Südwestsachsen
Straße der Nationen 25, 09111 Chemnitz

 

I also found this online. 

 

Is the Schlichtungsantrag the right process to start? I don't really want to make a claim against this individual since I am already filing a civil lawsuit for making my claim. What I want is for this person to face consequences like fines or even jail time because in my opinion, what they are doing is nothing short of criminal. I guess I will contact the IHK in Chemnitz? 

 

Edit : Can I just bring the matter to the police? 

 

Regards, 

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