IRVINE, Calif., May 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, 3,802 Online Trading Academy (OTA) students filed a Motion to Intervene and proposed Class Action Complaint, or lawsuit, against the Federal Trade Commission, in the United States District Court, Central District of California. The group of students, who on May 8th filed an amicus brief with the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in support of OTA's appeal to have the FTC's preliminary injunction vacated, allege the FTC is blindly interfering and jeopardizing the Students' education and violating their contractual and constitutional rights. The lawsuit is intended to restore access to the education for which they have already paid and counter the FTC's campaign to restrict access to nontraditional forms of financial education.
OTA students contend that the FTC, through its sweeping and uninformed actions, eliminated access to the education they purchased and to which they are entitled. And despite 1,400 students filing an amicus brief, over 9,000 students signing a petition filed in federal court categorically disputing the FTC's allegation of OTA deception, and 448 student sworn declarations voicing opposition to the FTC, an evidentiary hearing was never held to explore the accuracy of the FTC's accusation. Unfortunately, this evidence and extensive documentation of student support were disregarded.
Even worse, the FTC persists in its efforts to silence the very students it claims to represent, advises it will oppose the Students' Motion to Intervene, and that it will also oppose any effort to accelerate consideration of the Students' motion by the Court. The FTC's actions raise grave concerns over why it wants to block the voices and involvement of thousands of Students who have firsthand knowledge and want to inform the District Court about their direct experience of OTA's valuable programs and the exemplary integrity of that educational institution.
"From the outset, the FTC made clear it never had any intention of committing to fairness and due process, despite thousands of OTA students pleading with it to hear their side of the story," said Maurice Mitts, the lawyer representing the Students. "This is an assault on social justice and individual civil liberties. The scope and magnitude of this many students taking legal action against a federal government agency is both unprecedented and speaks volumes to the extent the government has violated fundamental American rights. We were left with no choice but to file legal action against the FTC."
Laura Owen, a long-time OTA student and member of the class action lawsuit against the FTC, added: "The FTC, nor any government entity, should dictate to American citizens our right to pursue education that we feel is best for our own needs. Enough is enough. The FTC's unconscionable actions set a dangerous precedent and pose an existential threat to our civil liberties."
Owen added: "The FTC claims the moral high ground of protecting consumers. Yet, why are they not fighting for our rights? We cannot allow the FTC to operate with impunity and zero accountability. I call on all students to rise up and have your voices heard!"
To learn more about how you can join this fight, please see here.
SOURCE Online Trading Academy