A former inmate and a family member of a current inmate have filed a proposed class action claiming Securus Technologies, Inc. charges “exorbitant” rates and fees for incarcerated individuals’ intrastate phone calls. The 18-page lawsuit out of Arkansas district court claims the defendant unlawfully charges up to 100 times the normal market rate for inmates’ calls. The defendant, a company that provides telecommunications services at correctional facilities throughout the U.S., allegedly takes advantage of the fact that its customers, prison inmates, are what the case calls a “captive market” in which no competitive forces exist to dictate prices. As a result of the defendant’s monopoly over the telephone services provided to its clients, the lawsuit alleges prison inmates often have to pay “significantly more to receive a single 15-minute phone call from prison” than for a basic monthly phone service available on the outside.
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