Bad taste, even if it's really bad, usually isn't against the law. But coupling that questionable taste with consumer deception can put a bull's-eye on your back.
Showbiz Promotions of Jacksonville, Fla., already had its critics. You don't win too many fans selling Caylee Anthony dolls or Michael Vick chew toys. But you do get your share of notoriety.
Showbiz and its owner Jaime Salcedo did get a few moments in the spotlight before Florida's attorney general fired at the bull's-eye.
His problems started with his own claims. His web site, vickdogchewtoy.com, promised speedy delivery of a U.S.-made dog toy with a portion of the proceeds to be donated to local animal shelters. The foreign-made products were delivered after a long wait, if at all, and didn't spur a round of donations anyone seemed to be aware of.
Then, in January, Salcedo started cayleedoll.com -- selling dolls commemorating the slain Florida girl with the pledge that all the profits would be donated to the Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
The site, the attorney general's office showed in a lawsuit filed last week, even included a link to a screen shot that showed a purported record of a $5,000 donation made online to the organization. The actual donation made in that transaction, the center said, was $10.
Gone now are the Caylee dolls -- off the market after an Anthony family lawyer contacted Salcedo. But if you'd like to see a commercial of a dog chewing on a rubber likeness (which a disclaimer says is not intended as a likeness at all) of Michael Vick, pay a visit to vickdogchewtoy.com. Jolt Media Group says it acquired the site along with several other off-color sites registered by Salcedo including this one, this one, and this one.
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