South Florida toilet paper scam to net prison time for three

A South Florida trio is facing up to two decades in prison after conning elderly customers into buying unnecessary septic products — in some cases more than 70 years worth of toilet paper, federal prosecutors say.

Salespeople for FBK Products, of West Palm Beach, told their victims that they needed the company’s special toilet paper to avoid ruining their septic tanks. The reason: the federal government changed regulations on toilet paper, the company claimed.

Three of the suspects, Christopher Lincoln, Mary Moore and Joseph Nouerand, last week pleaded guilty in federal court to conspiring to commit wire fraud. They agreed to cooperate with prosecutors and will be sentenced in February.

Three others are awaiting trial. Prosecutors said the company scammed about $1 million from more than a dozen victims from across the country.

In phone pitches, salespeople claimed the company was affiliated with the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. One product, the $199 Septic Remedy treatment, would eliminate the need to have their tanks pumped, the company claimed.

Victims were also told that they needed special soap, detergent and toilet paper or their septic tanks would not pass federal inspection. But the EPA does not regulate septic tank products, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.