– A Paterson-based used car dealership
has been ordered to disclose damage to and
prior use of the vehicles it is offering for
sale, after the Office of the Attorney General
and State Division of Consumer Affairs filed
suit against the dealership.
its five-count Verified Complaint, the state
alleges that Lencore Leasing, Inc., which
does business as North Jersey Auto Mall
and DCH Motors, and Lenny Belot, the owner/operator
of the dealership, violated the Consumer
Fraud Act, Used Car Lemon Law, and Motor
Vehicle Advertising Regulations in their
advertisement, offering for sale and sale
of used motor vehicles.
Friday, Superior Court Judge Mary Margaret
McVeigh granted the state’s request
to stop the dealership from advertising
and selling used vehicles without disclosing
prior damage and/or prior use, pending a
hearing on the state’s request for
preliminary injunctive and other relief.
The Judge also granted the state’s
request for the appointment of a temporary
monitor for the dealership.
cars are not inexpensive. Consumers who
are spending thousands of dollars for a
used vehicle are legally entitled to be
told if the vehicle has sustained prior
damage or if it’s been used as a fleet
or rental vehicle,” Attorney General
Jeffrey S. Chiesa said.
filed Verified Complaint identifies 51 used
vehicles that defendants allegedly offered
for sale which, by the state’s calculation,
had a cumulative $213,758 in undisclosed
damage. The state also alleges that, in
some instances, consumers were told that
vehicles were “absolutely mint in
and out” or were “ in pristine
condition” when such was not the case.
Verified Complaint also alleges that the
defendants’ online advertisements
failed to include the required disclosures
of prior use and prior damage and that defendants
violated the Used Car Lemon Law by allegedly
failing to disclose existing mechanical
defects in used motor vehicles prior to
sale. The Defendants also allegedly misrepresented
that vehicles were covered by a warranty
when such was not the case.
Verified Complaint also alleges, among other
things, that the defendants failed to respond
to consumer requests for refunds or reimbursements
for repairs that consumers paid for; failed
to include promised equipment such as navigation
systems and floor mats in the purchased
vehicles; and failed to disclose that the
sales price did not include licensing and
registration fees, and taxes.
nice wax job can make any vehicle look good.
But below the surface, we allege that real
and potentially dangerous problems existed
for Lencore’s consumers,” said
Eric T. Kanefsky, Acting Director of the
State Division of Consumer Affairs. “We
believe some purchasers might have reconsidered
their decision to buy if they had known
the vehicle had mechanical defects or had
been used in fleet or rental service.”
date, the Division of Consumer Affairs has
received 14 consumer complaints as to defendants,
three of which were forwarded from the Passaic
County consumer affairs office and one of
which was obtained from the Better Business
Bureau. The Division would like to thank
the Passaic County consumer affairs office
for its assistance with this investigation.
who believe they have been cheated or scammed
by a business, or suspect any other form
of consumer abuse, can file a complaint
with the State Division of Consumer Affairs
by visiting its website
or by calling 1-800-242-5846
(toll free within New Jersey ) or 973-504-6200.
the Division of Consumer Affairs on Facebook,
and check our online calendar of upcoming
Attorney General Jeffrey Koziar in the Consumer
Fraud Prosecution Section of the Division
of Law is representing the state in this
action. Investigator Murat Botas in the
Commercial Fraud Unit in the Division of
Consumer Affair’s Office of Consumer
Protection, conducted the investigation.