AG announces new fines for Philadelphia towing company

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AG announces new fines for Phila. towing company. Vernon Odom reports during Action News at 4:30pm on March 19, 2018. (WPVI)

The Pennsylvania Attorney General has announced new fines for a Philadelphia towing company, plus restitution for some consumers whose cars had been towed.

George Smith Towing has long been on the Action News radar screen for alleged illegal towing and abuse of motorists.

On Thursday, Pa. Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced a settlement with the company on behalf of 28 consumers who filed complaints.

All 28 will get their $205 fines refunded.

In addition, Shapiro announced thousands of dollars more in fines against the company as part of the newly reached settlement.

"We received 28 complaints," said Shapiro. "Look, parking in this city is hard enough without the threat of your car being illegally towed. This settlement is about protecting consumers from illegal conduct, and, most importantly, getting them the restitution that they are owed."

George Smith Towing is currently owned by Anthony DeAngelo, who has not returned calls from Action News.

Temple University student Meredith Cohen said she was victimized by the company last fall.

"When I attempted to retrieve my car from George Smith Towing, my boyfriend and I were treated horribly by the workers," Cohen said. "The workers informed me that they were going to hold my car for days because I called the police. I was informed that my credit card machine was broken (and) I would have to pay cash."

Under the settlement, Cohen's $205 towing bill has been refunded.

"We believe there may be other consumers here in the city of Philadelphia who have been harmed," said Shapiro. "We want to hear from you, and we need to hear from you prior to April 29th."

The April 29th deadline is part of the agreement reached with the company by the AG's Office.

Any new complaints about George Smith Towing must be filed by then for consumers to be reimbursed their $205 towing fee.

To contact the AG's office, call 800-441-2555 or email scams@attorneygeneral.gov.

You can also submit a complaint at www.attorneygeneral.gov/submit-a-complaint/

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