TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Pam Bondi announced today the sentencing of a Pinellas County man to two years in prison for fraudulently misrepresenting timeshare marketing services resulting in an estimated $900,000 in losses for the victims of this scheme. James Holmes, 55, previously handled sales operations for Buy Owner Resort Marketing, a company which operated in Ormond Beach and purported to offer advertising to customers looking to sell their timeshares. In June of this year, Holmes was found guilty of first degree grand theft for his role in the scheme.
A criminal investigation revealed that Holmes knew the customers were desperate to sell their timeshare, but that there was no real resale market for the timeshares. Buy Owner Resort Marketing sold no timeshares over the span of nearly a year of operation and approximately 1,100 customers were charged an average of $998 for marketing services that were not provided.
The Honorable Frank Marriott, Circuit Judge of the 7th Judicial Circuit sentenced Holmes to two years in prison, followed by 10 years probation. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services investigated the case and Attorney General Bondi’s Office of Statewide Prosecution prosecuted the case.
The court also ordered restitution for any known victims. If you sent money to this company between April of 2009 and May 19, 2010 and believe you are a victim, contact Assistant Statewide Prosecutor Robert Finkbeiner, Jr. at 407-245-0893 or Agent Sean Patton at 386-447-4250 by October 28, 2015.
The Office of Statewide Prosecution prosecutes multi-circuit organized crime while working regularly with federal and state counterparts to coordinate efforts against criminal activity. The office provides proactive partnership to law enforcement and is not limited to geographic or judicial boundaries.