Unfortunately creditors will threaten criminal action over the phone but not in writing. Such threats are a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Act. Ask them to send you a letter outlining there position: it will never come. Or, say "Can you repeat this while a turn on my tape recorder?" I think they will hang up then. As aside tape recording conversation is generally illegal in most states: so don't actually do it.
This is likely a scam. I would insist that they send you something in writing to review. If they refuse to do so, then it is unlikely they are legitimate and I'd ignore it. If they send you something in writing, and you still have questions/concerns, then talk with a local consumer law attorney who can assist you in reviewing your rights/obligations.
Most consumer law attorneys, such as our office, will give you a FREE consultation to review a situation like this.
Best of luck,
Tim L. Eblen
They might even envision themselves as wearing white hats and riding up to the filing desk at the clerk's office on unicorns with glittery manes and sparkly eyes as they seek to right their perceived wrongs.
Silly?Sure, but no sillier than suggesting they have the same authority as the prosecutor in the local jurisdiction. And my kind of silly is just more fun anyway.