LANSDOWNE, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- A local conglomerate that is accused of taking money for headstones and failing to deliver for families appeared in court on Tuesday.
The Action News Troubleshooters has received more than 170 complaints about the father-son duo of Greg Stefan Jr. and Greg Stefan Sr.
On Tuesday Greg Stefan Jr. was in court on criminal theft charges.
Action News first talked to Stefan Jr. in 2015.
"Why do you have so many complaints against your business?" asked Troubleshooter Nydia Han at the time.
"Nydia, we've responded to your questions and you don't have permission to film me. I'd appreciate it if you don't film me," Stefan Jr. responded.
Since then, the Troubleshooters have continued to get complaints and continued to warn viewers about the companies operated by the father-son duo.
"He charged my mother $1,629," said Natalie Rush of Quakertown.
In June of 2021, Rush said after her mother's sister passed. She paid Stefan Jr. in full to etch their family tombstone and pressure wash it.
But no work was done and no refund was given.
"When people are at their most vulnerable moment, and to walk in and steal, that's evil. That's just evil," Rush said.
"The contract did not say I couldn't get my money back," said Sheronda Israel of Yeadon.
Israel said she paid Stefan Jr. a $3,000 deposit for her mother's tombstone.
"Mr. Stefan just didn't follow up. He didn't come through," she said. "And I just want my money back."
According to the Yeadon Borough Police Department, Stefan Jr. is being criminally charged with theft by deception and deception of business practice.
Stefan's attorney tried unsuccessfully to get the charges dismissed at his preliminary hearing on Tuesday, claiming his client is not a party of the contract and didn't breach it.
"Since we last spoke, we've talked to a number of families who say that you took advantage of them when they were grieving. What do you have to say for yourself?" Han asked Stefan Jr. on Tuesday.
Stefan will have to answer in court. Israel says he will also have to answer to a higher power.
"He has to answer to God for that," she said.
The Pennsylvania Attorney General has received more than 600 complaints, 62 just since August. Litigation is pending against both of them and a second son named Gerard Stefan.
The trio operated under a long list of names including:
- 1843, LLC
- Colonial Memorials
- Stefan Memorial Group
- The Memorial Company
- Gallagher Memorials
- Alessi Memorials
- 1843 Memorials Cartledge
- 1843 New Britain Quakertown Memorials
- Lifestone By Stefan, LLC
- Stefan Memorials, Inc.