The Montgomery County Office of Consumer Affairs has filled suit against the former finance director of two county car dealerships for allegedly defrauding 120 customers of more than $50,000 by misrepresenting the interest rate on car loans offered by the dealers.
The two dealerships-Manhattan Porche-audi of Rockville and Herb Gordon Oldsmobile of Silver Spring-have both agreed to make appropriate refunds to consumers, according to George Rose, a consumer affairs investigator.
According to Rose, Richard Reichard of 3419 Dupont ave., Kensington the former finance director, allegedly told customers that they would be paying an interest rate of 11.7 percent but, in fact, their montly payments were computed at a rate 17.7 percent.
The county is seeking $240,000 in civil penalties from Richard, according to a suit filed late Monday afternoon in Montgomery County Circuit Court.
Reichard said he would have no comment on the charges and reffered all questions to his attorney, who who not available for comment.
Rose said that both dealerships have "voluntarily made refunds to customers ranging from less than $100 to oore than $1,000. In addtition Manhattan Porsche-aufi has agreed to pay the county $4,000 after the county alleged the dealership "should have known this (altering of the interest rates, was occuring)."
The Gordon dealership made no payment to the county, according to a spokesman for the offce, because it was not clear that Gordon offcials should hve know about the alleged misrepresentations.
Rose said that a portion of the finance charge went to the dealers. At Manhattan, he said, Reichard would get a certain bonus depending on the number of cars which were financed through the dealership. But at Gordon, Rose said, Reichard would get a commission based on the entire amount the customer paid.