You can’t make this stuff up: debt collector allegedly set up fake courtroom to trick debtors into paying.

I’ve seen and heard about so many illegal tactics that debt collectors use to try to collect debts, that I’m rarely surprised any more. But I have to admit that this one did shock me a little.

The Pennsylvania Attorney General recently sued a debt collector, Unicredit, for setting up a phony courtroom, complete with a raised bench and a “judge” in an effort to trick debtors into making payments. The suit also alleges that Unicredit used fake police officers to deliver court summonses to debtors and implied that failure to comply would lead to arrest. At the “hearings”, debtors were often pressured into giving their bank account information, as well as information about other assets.

“This is an unconscionable attempt to use fake court proceedings to deceive, mislead or frighten consumers into making payments or surrendering valuables to Unicredit without following lawful procedures for debt collection,” Attorney General Tom Corbett said in a statement.

Debt Collection Firm Accused Of Setting Up Phony Courtroom | Consumerist | October 29, 2010