HARRISBURG — Attorney General Josh Shapiro today detailed a lawsuit against a Bucks County business and its president accused of violating Pennsylvania consumer protection laws by repeatedly failing to deliver paid-for repairs, equipment and tools to its customers.
The lawsuit states that Gregory Bertino and his business, Robert’s Motor Mart, routinely failed to repair and return customers’ equipment and did not provide refunds to customers. Robert’s Motor Mart is a small-engine sale and repair shop in Feasterville, which advertised services for lawn mowers, pressure washers, weed whackers, snow blowers and other items.
“Robert’s Motor mart ripped off Bucks County consumers who spent hard-earned money to repair their property, including lawnmowers and snow blowers.” Attorney General Shapiro said at a news conference in Bensalem, near Robert’s Motor Mart. “Whether you spend $30 or $3000, you deserve to get what you paid for. These consumers never did, so we’re fighting for them in court.”
Eight consumers have come forward and filed complaints with the Office of Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, leading to the lawsuit in Bucks County Common Pleas Court.
Attorney General Shapiro emphasized the Bureau of Consumer Protection believes there are other consumers who were harmed. “If you believe you’ve been scammed, call our Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-800-441-2555,” Shapiro said. “Or email us at email@example.com. We’re asking consumers who were ripped off by Robert’s Motor Mart to let us know.”
The consumer protection lawsuit was recently served on Bertino’s attorney when Bertino failed to appear for a hearing on theft charges being prosecuted by the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office.
One consumer who filed a complaint with the Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection is Hank Boyer, 62, of Holland, Bucks County. Boyer spent $400 on a hedge trimmer that needed repairs, so he brought it to Robert’s Motor Mart and paid a deposit. After weeks of waiting, he was told his hedge trimmer was stolen in a burglary. Then he was told the trimmer was “found.” When he went to retrieve it, he was given a piece of rusted equipment – not his hedge trimmer.
“I realized I got the runaround,” Boyer said. “It was very frustrating. It’s the principle of the thing.” Boyer said he was still waiting for a refund or return of his original hedge trimmer.
Attorney General Shapiro detailed similar cases of consumers being scammed:
- Robert Kuczynski, of Bensalem, paid $338 to Robert’s Motor Mart to fix his snow blower.After never getting a straight answer, Robert got his equipment back – badly leaking gas and not working.
- Tom Wakeley, of Bensalem, paid $450 for a power washer from the shop. He never received it.
- Another consumer paid $720 for a snow blower, nail gun and a saw – and never got the tools.
- Yet another consumer paid $200 for a dirt bike – and never got the bike.
The lawsuit alleges Bertino and Robert’s Motor Mart also failed to register business names with the Pennsylvania Department of State, Bureau of Corporations, as required by law.
The lawsuit seeks an injunction to restrain Bertino and his business from continuing these deceptive practices and full restitution for consumers. It also seeks civil penalties and injunctive relief.
Attorney General Shapiro thanked the Bucks County Department of Consumer Protection, which referred complaints in this case to the Bureau of Consumer Protection, and the Lower Southampton Police Department and Bucks County District Attorney’s Office, which are separately pursuing criminal charges against Bertino.
“The cooperation of local police and consumer protection advocates in this case is serving the consumers who’ve been scammed,” Shapiro said. “We’re very grateful for it.”