Slight circumstantial evidence of fraud
On December 21, 2006, I was involved in an unfortunate car accident that caused me to lose my car. This put me in a desperated position, needing to urgently replace my lost automobile. I immediately began the research, and browsed several websites, looking for a Used Car to purchase.
After visiting Clear Lake Infiniti's website, and speaking to a Salesman, Buddy King, my wife, my daughter (2 years old) went to the Clear Lake Infiniti car dealership. This is where our nightmare began.
We thought we would have some straightalk after running my wife's credit, since she was applying on her name alone. What followed was like an hour of waiting, when I began to feel like we were being made to wait on purpose. Finally, after asking Mr. Kyle Dang, Finance Director, about what our rights were to negotiate the APR and the other terms and conditions of the Sales Contract, we hardly got a straight answer to any of our questions. Neither did Mr. Kyle Dang inform us of our rights to negotiate. At one point, I asked him if he could show me what APR's were available based on my wife's credit, he wrote down on a piece of paper, "11.9 for 4 years; 12.9 for 5 years; and 13.9 for 6 years." I did realize then, but understand now, why he wrote this on a piece of paper. I now believe it was to destroy any evidence that might show what he was representing to us.
Then things got a little more twisted. After not being informed of any rights available to us, even after I continually asked, we accepted a financing deal that included a 13.9% APR, for 5 years (60 months). We were made to wait awhile while they cleaned the car, then we left with a Sales Contract we were not too content with, because I felt for various reasons that I tried explaining to Mr. Kyle Dang, that the APR was too high. Nevertheless, we agreed to these terms.
In the week following this transaction, my wife got a call from Mr. Kyle Dang, Finance Director, at Clear Lake Infiniti, at her place of employment. My wife returned his call, and he told my wife that her and I needed to go back to the dealership to finalize our transaction. Not completely understanding what was going on, we returned to the Car Dealership the following weekend, on January 23, 2007. At this time, Mr. Dang told us he needed to "rerun" the credit, because he mentioned some issues with the Lender. At this time, my wife left the room to go buy milk for my baby daughter. Mr. Dang got on the phone with the Lender and was apparently negotiating with the Lender, who he said was "Citifinancial Auto".
After he got off the phone with the Lender, Mr. Dang waited for my wife to get back into the room, then proceeded with telling us that he had renegotiated the "Number of Months" so that the monthly payment would be lower. However, he did not inform us of the "rise" in the APR. Then, before signing the "new" Sales Contract, we were unaware of the "new, higher APR", and we believed that it was the same as before. I also did not understand why Mr. Dang would have renegotiated a Sales Contract, that ultimately turned out to be worse for us. I suspected then, and still believe now, that Mr. Dang was operating for his own benefit, mainly his commission pay for the transaction, rather than for our benefit as consumers.
With that said, I was reviewing the Sales Contract later that week, when I stumbled upon the slot with the APR, and sure enough, it was "3.0 %" higher than the one we thought we were agreeing to "13.9%". Then began the emails, and subsequently the complaints to various private and public agencies about what happened.
At this point, what I believe were fraudulent misrepresentations made by Mr. Kyle Dang, Finance Director, were made on purpose, and with the intent to induce my wife to signing a Sales Contract with terms and conditions were not made aware of. I know we should have looked it over before signing, but we trusted what we were told, and we relied on Mr. Dang's representations to our detriment.
After doing the math, it turns out Mr. Dang "renegotiations" with the Lender cost us in "Total Amount of Dollars" about $3,300.00.
Most damaging, after I emailed Mr. Kyle Dang two times, he finally responded by calling me to my work, and making demeaning statements about my wife and I. I was very emotionally distressed, and Mr. Dang was very harassing on this phone call, at one point telling me that if I was going to plan to sue over this, that "Mr. Wayne Fisher, [Attorney at Law]...was the Lawyer for Clear Lake Infiniti." He also tried to intimidate me further by saying that "Fred Haas owned Clear Lake Infiniti...", although I did not know what exactly he was implying, I understood his words were meant to deter me from continuing in the complaint process, to scare me and threatening me from pursuing this further.
Words cannot describe how horrible it feels to know that we were taken advantage of to a grossly unfair degree. Even worse, as a consumer, I felt I had done everything I could to prevent something like this from happening. I believed that the staff at Clear Lake Infiniti would handle us with ethical professionalism, and instead, we received treatment that I believe is not only fraudulent, but borderline criminal. I believe Mr. Dang knew full well what the negative effects of his actions were, but he failed to properly advise us and inform us of what we, by law, were entitled to be told.
Needing another car to get me to work was so important, that I knew I would have to purchase a car soon.