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AG hits the brake on predatory used-car dealer

SILVER SPRING TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced a new legal action Dec. 24 against a Cumberland County used-car dealer. The m...

SILVER SPRING TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced a new legal action Dec. 24 against a Cumberland County used-car dealer. The motion for contempt, filed in Cumberland County Court, says New Kingstown Auto in Mechanicsburg has a long history of breaking Pennsylvania car dealership laws and should be shut down.

AG hits the brake on predatory used-car dealer

In 2016, the Attorney General's office sued New Kingstown Auto to cease their use of blind dealer ads that misrepresented mileage, stop selling vehicles without appropriate licenses, obtain an installment seller license, and transmit title and tags. In May of 2019, the dealership agreed to pay a $50,892.29 settlement, including $25,367.29 in restitution for deceptive business practices. In the six months since,  New Kingstown Auto still hasn't paid half of that money. They also sold at least one car that was not roadworthy, crashing just a day after being purchased, according to the Attorney General's office, which also wrote in a press release:

"This business`s ongoing, blatant disregard for the law is a bumper argument for our demand that the Court of Common Pleas hit the brakes on the dealership and its owner`s ability to sell more vehicles."

The motion for contempt seeks $27,052.52 in restitution to victims, and it would ban the dealership's owner, Harry Laughman, from selling cars in Pennsylvania.

Laughman is also the business's only salesman. He referred questions to his lawyer, John Glace.

Glace declined to speak on camera, but said over the phone that Laughman hasn't sold cars in more than a month because of a family member's health problems, adding the "one-man operation" will probably have to shut down if the motion is approved.

Anyone who feels they were victimized by New Kingstown Auto can file a complaint at www.attorneygeneral.gov/submit-a-complaint or contact the Office of Attorney General at: 800-441-2555 or scams@attorneygeneral.gov.