Youth football league founder still owes customers a refund

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PHOENIX - A Valley mom claims a youth football league is going belly up and is refusing to refund her money.

This football league has actually been in the news before.

There are published reports from last summer indicating that Top Flight Youth Sports and its founder have had a very rocky relationship with the town of Gilbert.

Now that bad relationship includes at least one mother who wrote to 3 On Your Side.

Monica Coates has four sons and every one of them loves sports.

"In our house sports are important!" Coates said. "It keeps our kids busy, they love it, and they're good at it."

So when the boys wanted to join a flag football league Coates said she signed them up.

Coates said she chose a league run by an organization called Top Flight Youth Sports.

"We tried to pick a league that had been around, and it had been around for a lot of years and we did our research," she said

The boys played in the league's Fall session and enjoyed themselves so much Monica says she signed them up for the Spring session as well.

"What we did is, the moms in the neighborhood, we all got our registrations together and gave them to our coach and he turned it in for us," Coates said.

Coates said she paid $150 for that second session to the league's founder Tom Miller.

Just before the season began though, Coates said she couldn't get a hold of anyone at Top Flight.

"I was really worried about it because we'd already paid our money," she said. "We have a whole team of kids plus another son of mine was on another team. We'd paid for him, and it made me worry."

But Coates said the league told her not to worry. Coates' $150 registration fees would be returned.

Well it's been more than a month now and Coates said she, and other parents, have not received their registration fees.

"He doesn't call us back, he won't give us our money back," she said. "I told him I would come pick my money up in my e-mail. Nothing."

So, 3 On Your Side got involved. We discovered Tom Miller's home is in foreclosure.

In an email to 3 On Your Side, Miller said he is trying to avoid bankruptcy and intends on giving parents their money back.

Coates said she still hasn't had a nickel refunded.

"It makes me mad because who takes money from people who are signing their kids up to play football."

Miller claimed he has made a total of 454 refunds and only owes 18 more parents, including Coates.