News 9's Oklahoma Impact Team found out that Oklahoma is ground zero for the government cellphone fraud. On Tuesday, our investigation goes a step further.
Our investigation could prove to be an important first step in reforming the 'Lifeline' program, a 27-year-old federal program funded by you and me through the universal service fee, which is tacked onto every phone bill in America.
Going undercover, we found vendors for several phone companies who were more than willing to ignore the program's rules, and give free cell phones to people who don't qualify.
Jennifer Loren and Alex Cameron took the evidence we collected to the FBI here in Oklahoma City. Agents will use that information to help determine whether to launch their own investigation.
We will keep you posted.
Also, we can tell you that we have now heard from the attorney for Easy Wireless, the Florida-based company whose tent worker improperly gave one of its phones to Jennifer, even after she explained that she didn't qualify.
"We're very interested in investigating the problems you exposed in your story, so that we can determine the causes and prevent a recurrence."
In an email he said he wanted to talk to our Oklahoma Impact Team because, "we're very interested in investigating the problems you exposed in your story, so that we can determine the causes and prevent a recurrence."
We've forwarded his e-mail to the enforcement bureau of the FCC. The Oklahoma Corporation Commission says it's frustrated and wishes it could do more to police the cell phone program, but authority lies with the FCC, and it doesn't see the FCC doing much about it.