CA Attorney General Sues Major Car Dealer For Fraud, Unlawful Practices | Top Stories | NewsRadio KFBK
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra hosted a news conference on Monday morning to announce legal action against an automotive dealership operating throughout California and its chief executive for unlawful business practices affecting perhaps tens-of-thousands of consumers statewide, though he added that at the end of the day they don't know exactly how many people may be involved. The investigation of Paul Blanco's Good Car Company reportedly took place over a two year period.
The practices in question include false advertising regarding credit and discount programs, making false statements on credit applications, and deceiving customers regarding add-on products and additional charges, according to Becerra. The company operates a network of seven dealership locations in California, including three dealerships in Sacramento, and the company sells primarily used vehicles.
The lawsuit charges Paul Blanco with making false statements on credit applications and intentionally deceiving lenders about the value of vehicles and the consumer's ability to make loan payments. That allegedly allowed the company to increase profits while increasing the likelihood that consumers would be end up with loans they could not afford.
"A car is one of the largest, and most important purchases for many families, allowing people to get to work, school, and connect to their communities," said Attorney General Becerra. "Far from a good car company, Paul Blanco's abhorrent conduct put vulnerable families at risk, through deceitful advertising and illegal sales and lending practices. It's disgraceful and it's unlawful. Working families make every dollar count. Today's action is about protecting our families from deception and unlawful practices that swindle these dollars away, leading to unaffordable debt."
In the suit Becerra contends that Paul Blanco also tricked customers into paying thousands of dollars for extra add-on products, like service contracts and optional insurance meant to help pay off an auto loan if the customer's car was totaled or stolen and they owed more than the car's depreciated value. California Department of Justice investigators claim sales representatives were instructed to cover with their hands parts of sales contracts detailing those add-ons and instructed to tell customers that the charges were required by law if asked about them. Paul Blanco employees who took issue with the company's policies were instructed to not to snitch, according Becerra.
The company is also alleged to have run ran numerous false and deceptive advertising campaigns on television, radio, and on the internet to lure consumers into their dealerships.
A call to Paul Blanco's Good Car Company for comment was not immediately returned.
FRESNO, Calif. -- The state of California has filed a lawsuit against Paul Blanco's Good Car Company, a group of car dealerships and its namesake owner, Paul Blanco. Attorney General Xavier Becerra accuses the dealership group
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