In the complaint -- registered at the office's Bureau of Consumer Protection on behalf of over 120 subscribers seeking refunds on their newspaper subscriptions -- Alyssa Rokito alleged that the students received "undependable and infrequent delivery," were billed for subscriptions they had already paid and had almost no success at reaching Monk directly to discuss the problem. No one at the attorney general's office could be reach for comment last night. Monk, who has refused to discuss Penn News with The Daily Pennsylvanian on several occasions, did not respond to several phone messages last night. Wharton graduate student Jonathan Eilian, who said last week that he and Rokito were exploring the possibility of filing a class-action lawsuit against Monk and Penn News, said he helped file the complaint. According to Eilian, the attorney general's office will begin "investigating Penn News immediately" to see whether the delivery service may have violated various Pennsylvania statutes, including the Unfair and Deceptive Trading Act. If found guilty, Penn News could be forced to pay each subscriber listed in the complaint up to $300, regardless of the amount of their claim, according to Eilian. He added that the total judgment against Penn News could exceed $35,000. To facilitate the investigation, Eilian said he and Rokito provided the office with copies of cancelled checks, subscriber complaint forms and bills reportedly sent to the parents of subscribers who already had paid Penn News. Eilian said he would like to see the matter resolved as quickly as possible, but he stressed that he and Rokito will persist until all refunds are paid. "As soon as Penn News fulfills its obligation to all those students who paid in advance, I would be happy to inform the attorney general that the claims have been paid," Eilian said. If this attempt to resolve the problem fails, Eilian said he will continue working to get refunds. "This complaint is only our first step," he said. "We have only just begun to pursue this claim. Now that we've come together and are acting in unison, I feel that we are much more likely to get Monk's attention." The other students are similarly determined, he said. "The students feel taken advantage of and are willing to take whatever steps are necessary to get their money back," he said. "They're going to stick with it."Comments powered by Disqus
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