Claims that felons had access to credit card information while processing donations for Republican political donors are being reported by Politics in Minnesota.
The claims are denied by Jeff Larson, co-founder of the fundraising firm involved, FLS Connect. Larson is the Minnesota-based political consultant who ran the 2008 Host Committee for the Republican National Convention and rented the Washington apartment to Norm Coleman.
The man making the accusations is Brian Jones, a six-time convicted felon who was fired two weeks ago from his phones job with FLS Connect in Arizona.
PIM says Jones claims “that it’s standard practice to tell potential donors that they are being transferred to a supervisor if they agree to provide a credit card number, but that they are simply being transferred to a different phone bank employee.”
“It’s not a supervisor,” he said. “It could be the guy sitting right next to you, and he probably just got out of prison.” (Jones volunteered that he spent time in a federal prison for possession of a stolen credit card, a claim confirmed by penal records.)
Larson denied that call center employees can gain access to credit card data. When potential donors want to give a card number, he said, they are in fact transferred to a superior. He further said that the company has never experienced credit card fraud in the 10 years it’s been in business.
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Jones believes that if potential donors knew more about the people who call them as many as three times a week asking for money for Republican candidates and causes, it would be a cause of great consternation.
“We make political calls to people around the country — a bunch of felons who know nothing about politics,” Jones said. “We can’t even vote.”
Larson said he recognized Jones’ name, but “I couldn’t tell you who he was.”
“If that’s the way he makes his calls, that’s why he’s not working for us,” Larson added. “We don’t mislead people. That’s completely not accurate. We don’t tell them things that aren’t true.”