A state district judge in Austin, Texas, on Friday ordered Jawa to comply with Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) guidelines, granting part of a temporary injunction sought by the Texas Attorney General.
The court did not bar Jawa from doing business in Texas, as requested by the state’s Attorney General.
Both the Texas Attorney General and Verizon Wireless are suing Jawa over alleged SMS fraud.
The judge in the Texas case ruled that the state had not presented sufficient evidence to grant the injunction, and instead required Jawa to follow a laundry list of MMA’s guidelines on its premium SMS services. The judge’s decision came after a five-hour evidentiary hearing on Wednesday, April 6.
The order indicates that the court found that the Texas Attorney General had reason to believe that Jawa’s premium SMS services had violated the Deceptive Trade Practices Act.
Jawa claims it is already in compliance with the rules and is appealing the court order mandating compliance with the MMA guidelines.
“Jawa follows the MMA Guidelines,” Jawa CEO Jason Hope said in a statement. “Our problem with the judge’s order and what we will raise in our appeal is that they shouldn’t be modified and mandated state-by-state and judge-by-judge.”
The Texas Attorney General has dropped its request for an injunction against the individually named defendants and a request to stop Jawa from disposing of assets and documents relevant to the case. The decision to drop the two requests came after the judge ruled that the state failed to present evidence that Jawa failed to preserve documents or that it dissipated assets.
The Texas Attorney General and Verizon Wireless have accused a ring of companies led by Jawa of duping customers into unintentionally signing up for premium text messages with hidden fees.
Jawa, also known as Eye Level Holdings, allegedly used cloaking software to hide the existence of the fraud from Verizon’s auditors. Jawa has filed a counter suit against Verizon alleging that the wireless operator is deliberately disparaging its business.
Filed Under: Industry regulations