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Attorney General Targets Local Dealership for Alleged Fraud

Source: Google Maps

Source: Google Maps

Jan. 21, 2016 Staff Report

The Koeppel car dealerships, several of which are located on Northern Boulevard, have been slapped with a lawsuit by New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman for unlawfully selling credit repair and identity theft protection.

The dealerships include Koeppel Nissan (74-15 Northern Blvd.), Koeppel Volkswagen (57-15 Northern Blvd.), Koeppel Mazda (57-01 Northern Blvd.) and Koeppel Subaru (42-01 Northern Blvd.), among others.

Nearly 1,500 customers were unlawfully sold these “after-sale” products by Koeppel dealerships, according to Schneiderman. In some cases, consumers were charged more than $2,000.

The lawsuit claims that the Koeppel dealerships misled consumers by concealing the charges after indicating the services were free.

The dealerships, which are all owned by the Koeppel family, allegedly collected more than $1 million from consumers between January 2013 and November 2014 for credit repair or identity theft protection, according to the lawsuit.

Consumers did not receive the services, according to Schneiderman.

“When consumers shop for a car, they should not be misled by deceptive dealerships looking to make a quick buck off New Yorkers,” Schneiderman said.

“Unfortunately, some dealers pad their pockets with fees for products and services that unaware consumers don’t need, and don’t want.”

The Koeppel dealerships arranged with an independent company, Credit Forget It, Inc., to sell credit repair and identity theft protection services beginning in early 2013. It is a violation of state and federal law to charge upfront fees for services that promise to help consumers restore or improve their credit, according to Schneiderman.

The lawsuit further alleges that the Koeppel dealerships added on charges for other after-sale items like VIN etching and key replacement services, without clearly disclosing what they were charging for such services.

The dealership would often bundle these added costs into the vehicle sales price without separately itemizing them, inflating the total price, according to the suit.

In addition, the Koeppel complaint alleges that the dealerships sometimes negotiated purchase and lease terms with consumers in Spanish and then only provided contracts and documents in English. New York City law requires that when the terms of an installment agreement are negotiated in Spanish, the seller must provide documents translated into Spanish, Schneiderman stated.

The lawsuit has been filed in New York Supreme Court.

None of the dealerships could be reached for comment.

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11 Comments

mark

FUNNY this place is full of a bunch of CROOOOKS, Long story short 1st time leasing a car and got SCREWED and Taken advantage of. Agreed on a price shook on it, the next day I come and pick up the car. They raise my monthly payments an extra 75$ a month saying my credit was sub-par. That place made me sick to my stomach. CROOOOKS fortunate for everyone looking to buy/lease a car theyree are out of businness

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Mark

I have also had problems with the service at the VW Koeppel on Northern. They installed a roof rack and damaged the side of the car. They claimed that the car came in with the damage, but never called to let me know. It was definitely damaged by them- the damage was exactly where the rack was installed. They offered to fix the damage for a few hundred dollars- I refused and have not been back. I take my car to another VW dealership. I ended up buying the part to replace the one that was damaged for about $50 and switched it out myself. So, in summary, they damaged the car and then wanted to rip me off with the fix.

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Wolfsbane

C’mon, isn’t the mere act of opening a car dealership prima facie evidence of intent to commit fraud? Like going to law school or running for political office as a candidate for a major political party.

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Jay

I have had nothing but problems with Koeppel, and would never buy or have my car serviced there again. I’m glad their bad behavior is catching up to them!

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WoodsideChick

Dodge Ram on Northern Blvd did a number on me too, I have no drivers license and i ended with a car they worked magic on me i had to pay over 1200 dollars in car payments and car insurance it’s not fair !!

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K G

I think this might be the place that did a credit check on me without me ever setting foot there or contacting them in anyway. It was a car dealership. I’d have to go back to my credit report but I’m starting to think this was the place! It just showed up on my credit report and I thought I was identity thefted! Seriously, AG if you read this you can contact me!

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