Glenn Beck Advertiser Goldline Faces Criminal Charges (VIDEO, SLIDESHOW)
One of Glenn Beck's most loyal sponsors is in a pickle again.
Goldline, the precious metals dealer who boasted endorsement deals with conservative figures like Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham was charged with misdemeanor crimes on Tuesday for running what officials called a "bait and switch operation."
ABC's Brian Ross reported the news on "Good Morning America" Wednesday morning. He highlighted that the charges grew out of an ABC investigation that first broke on "GMA" last year, when Goldline CEO Scott Carter was interviewed by George Stephanopolous.
Goldline was charged with misdemeanor crimes including false advertising, false pretenses and conspiracy. The charges do not include Glenn Beck or any of the company's sponsors. The official legal complaint said that Goldline, and specifically CEO Scott Carter, advertised the sale of gold bullion without planning to ever sell it. According to the complaint, the company instead used "false and misleading claims" to convince customers to purchase "highly-overpriced" gold coins, despite the fact the customers originally sought to invest in gold bullion.
Goldline released a statement to ABC that called the allegations "preposterous" and said the company planned to fight back against the charges.
Beck has endorsed the company through commercial spots. In one commercial (watch below), Beck described Goldline as "top-notch" and said that he flew out to California so he could tour the company and "look them in the eye" before he turned viewers on to them. Goldline has also supported Beck's media ventures, remaining one of his staunchest advertisers. The company's relationship to Beck continued after Beck left Fox News to start his online venture GBTV. Currently, Goldline is an underwriter for the web channel.
Watch the videos below and view a slideshow of Goldline's current sponsors, as listed on its website.