WASHINGTON—Cracking down on what the agency deemed a widespread deceitful practice, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau fined a local curio shop Thursday that allegedly disappeared mere hours after unloading a haunted talisman. “We became aware of the situation after a handful of customers who bought enchanted talismans from the shop reported unnerving side effects shortly thereafter, but were unable to locate the business when they sought to return the items for cash or store credit,” said agency spokesperson Martine Belessandro, claiming that regardless of the side effects, which ranged from aging in reverse to demonic possession, the consumer was entitled to at least 90 days of purchase protection according to the store’s own policy and local laws. “After the store disappeared without any evidence of having existed outside of the memory of the customers in question, our agency managed to track down the cape-adorned proprietor and issue him a series of fines with the goal of preventing him from committing the same deception in another town. If business owners are going to cackle and disappear in a cloud of smoke, that’s their prerogative, but they do need to prominently display adequate signage of their intent to do so around the store, as well as include written details of the return policy on each receipt.” At press time, the CPB informed the proprietor he would need to resign his paperwork in red or blue ink rather than blood.
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