FORT MYERS, Fla - New developments in a year-long WINK News Call for Action investigation involving an air conditioning comany owner.
When we sat down with former owner of Service Star, Salvatore Tavolacci, we asked him if he was still in the AC business.
"Listen to me I am glad to be out of the AC business, OK? I've had nothing but heartache. I've lost a lot of things in my life because of that business," Sal told us.
Over the past year, we've tracked dozens of complaints that his company "Service Star" was ripping people off and violating the state's Do Not Call List. Recently the state fined Service Star $6,000.
Now we've learned the new owner of another AC company Tavolacci started up then sold called "Air Experts," is in trouble for telemarketing without a license.
We sat down with Air Experts owner Antonio Miralles a day after he was arrested. He says he was not making cold calls, but calling his existing customers.
"[The Department of Agriculture] raided the building pretty much. They didn't know the name of the building or the air conditioning company basically. They told us we were in violation of calling customers which is my customer base. They said I needed a license to call my own customers. I argued. Then they told me I was telemarketing," said Miralles.
Miralles also told us that he outsources telemarketing to a company in New York.
Salvatore Tavolacci says Miralles' arrest is all because of the trouble he got in when he ran his AC company. We asked Tavolacci if he thought it was a witch hunt.
"In my opinion, no doubt," he said. "No doubt a witch hunt."
We asked why he thought that and he said, "I'm not even in the business anymore but yet they're still coming after me."
Miralles is upset because he says, he didn't do anything wrong.
"As a business I think I have a right to call my own customers," he told us.
The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services' arrest report says investigators found sales scripts and receipts from telemarketing calls on site. The state says without a license, that's illegal.
However, Miralles denies any telemarketing was going on in the building. He also says he's not affiliated with Tavolacci, aside from buying Air Experts and sharing a building.