Blumenthal wants cooperation from car company

John O'Brien Sep. 24, 2007, 2:45pm


HARTFORD, Conn. - An auto dealer in Shelton sued by the State of Connecticut is not complying with the investigation into it, and Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is moving to enforce subpoenas issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Blumenthal claimed Friday that Crabtree Subaru and Crabtree Dodge have not provided the requested documents during the course of the investigation to the DMV. A suit filed this summer by Blumenthal alleges almost 300 instances of false and misleading advertising.

"My action seeks penalties and a court order compelling Crabtree to comply with the State's demand for documents," Blumenthal said. "Crabtree's defiance of state subpoenas is unacceptable. Even while we pursue Crabtree in court for hundreds of instances of alleged false and misleading advertising, the company's brazen law-breaking continues."

Blumenthal says the information is needed to determine if additional allegations will be made in his suit, like violations of motor vehicle laws. The two sides will argue in a hearing Oct. 15 in Superior Court.

The dealer advertised loans with no or $1 down payments, payments as low as $37 per month and limited time discounts up to 70 percent, Blumenthal says. He adds that no customer received such a good deal.

"Our investigation into Crabtree is continuing aggressively, and our lawsuit will be expanded to include any new and emerging allegations. Tactics by Crabtree to delay or avoid our ongoing investigation will not be tolerated."

Some of the ads, Blumenthal alleges, included testimonials from individuals who represented themselves as customers, though they never were.

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