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STATE CONSUMER DIVISION ORDERS COALITION TO STOP SOLICITING FOR DONATIONS

The state Division of Consumer Protection has ordered the Utah Law Enforcement Coalition to stop soliciting for charitable donations immediately.

The division issued a cease and desist order on March 6 to the coalition, 858 S. McClelland St., because it does not have a valid permit to solicit for charitable purposes, a violation of state law. The coalition has 10 days to request a division hearing, at which time it may challenge the order.Francine Giani, division director, said a charity, by law, must register with the state annually. According to the state Charitable Solicitations Act, it is "unlawable for any organization to knowingly solicit, request, promote, advertise or sponsor the solicitation of any contribution for a charitable purpose, unless the organization is a holder of a permit issued by the division."

She said in order to obtain the permit, the organization must file an annual financial report showing how the charitable donations are used.

The organization has obtained the permit in the past. However, the coalition has no valid permit now, although it is currently soliciting donations. Division officials noticed an advertisement by the charity last week, Giani said.

The division has sent two letters to the coalition since November but has received no response, the director said.

Coalition officials could not be reached for comment on the order. While it has a Salt Lake address, the Utah Law Enforcement Coalition has no phone listing.