I am happy to report a Dealer Fraud trial success. On Monday, April 2, 2018, a civil jury in Philadelphia found that Pacifico Ford had fraudulently misrepresented a vehicle sold to my client, had acted outrageously, and imposed punitive damages. The jury found that Pacifico Ford had committed fraud and violated the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law.
I am very happy to report that the FBI has arrested a VW executive. The NY Times reports that the FBI accuses "him of playing a central role in a broad conspiracy to keep United States regulators from discovering that diesel vehicles made by the company were programmed to cheat on emissions tests." This form of Dealer Fraud and Manufacturer Fraud is probably just the tip of the iceberg.
There has been a recent development that shows just how important is good regulation in combatting Dealer Fraud. Some time ago, AutoNation, the nation's largest new vehicle retailer, announced that it would not sell any vehicles, new or used, unless and until all safety recalls were corrected.
Dealers want to be able to sell vehicles as Certified even if they are subject to open recalls. I addressed this travesty in my last post. A Blogger, Joanne Doroshow, recently posted a very apt blog on the subject.
Readers of this blog know that I consider Certified programs to be a complete scam. This is not real supevision and accountability and thus no real standards. It's a real and growing area of Dealer Fraud and Manufacturer Fraud as well.
You can take the man out of the dealer, but you can't take the dealer (delaer fraud) out of the man - or so it seems. The Washington Post recently reported about how a dealer turned Congressman has continued his unscrupulous practices.
Most people know Forgery is a crime. Most people don't know that forgery cover more than just fake signatures. Dealers are known for forgery. It is part of their stock and trade.
This will be the first in a series of blogs explaining the procedural aspects of Certified Pre-Owned programs. I have written about Certifications scams before. You all know it is my experience and opinion that all Certification programs are scams. They are long on promises of rigors and standards, but very short on oversight and accountability.
Readers of this blog will remember that I've spoken on this subject several times. Many dirty dealers, dirty banks and dirty corporations slip Forced Arbitration Clauses (FACs) into the fine print of their contracts. Among other things, bad Court decisions have interpreted these FACs to mean that consumers have waived their constitutional right to file a claim in Court. Dealer Fraud, Abusive Debt Collectors and Abusive Repossessors have no greater friend than Forced Arbitration.
Dirty dealers operate from the belief that most, almost all, disgruntled customers will eventually just give up and go away. They think if they string things out long enough, leave you on hold for long enough, let enough phone calls go unreturned, break enough promises... you will eventually give up and go away. Dealers get away with Dealer Fraud, because too many people let them get away with Dealer Fraud.