Mo. AG says auto dealer breaking the law

Bryan Cohen Dec. 27, 2011, 10:21am


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Legal Newsline) - Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster filed a lawsuit on Thursday against a St. Louis-based auto dealer and its operators for allegedly violating multiple laws.

McMullen Auto Credit and its operators -- James L. McMullen, Jr., James L. McMullen, Sr., and Nikki Darlene McMullen -- allegedly demanded payments from customers not due to them and failed to provide titles for cars purchased by customers.

Koster is seeking a restraining order to prevent the McMullens from operating their business and restitution for customers.

The defendants allegedly failed to provide titles to customers who purchased vehicles as required by law and sold vehicles for which the business did not have the titles, failed to provide warranties as promised to customers and misrepresented the annual percentage rate on vehicle loans.

The defendants also allegedly collected payments for McMullen Auto Credit after the business sold the customers' installment loan contracts to another business, making McMullen no longer entitled to collect the money, and threatened to repossess vehicles for lack of payment to McMullen Auto Credit when customers were making payments to the business that owned their loan.

"There are clear laws in Missouri to protect buyers of used vehicles," Koster said. "When these laws are violated we will act aggressively to stop the violations and seek restitution for those harmed."

The lawsuit also seeks civil penalties of $1,000 per violation and to require the defendants to pay for all court and prosecution costs.

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