For Immediate Release - April 26, 2012

Former Owners of Riverside Mitsubishi Ordered to Pay Over $300,000 in Restitution and Penalties

Couple Failed to Pay Prior Judgment and Resumed Selling Cars in Massachusetts in Violation of Court Order

WORCESTER – The former owners of Riverside Mitsubishi in Auburn were ordered by a judge to pay $100,000 in restitution and $200,000 in penalties, Attorney General Martha Coakley announced today. Last November, the AG’s Office filed a contempt proceeding against Darryl and Brenda Rivernider, of Oxford, for allegedly selling cars in Massachusetts in violation of a court order and for allegedly failing to make the final $100,000 payment owed to the Commonwealth as required under a consent judgment in 2005.

“The defendants blatantly ignored a court order and attempted to avoid accountability for their actions,” AG Coakley said. “We are pleased that this judgment will help us recover the remaining restitution owed to consumers whose hard earned money was stolen nearly seven years ago.”

The Riverniders were ordered to stop selling cars in Massachusetts, either directly or through others, as part of a consent judgment obtained by AG Coakley’s Office in 2005. The contempt proceeding filed against the Riverniders in Worcester Superior Court alleged that on at least five different occasions during August and September of 2011, the Riverniders engaged in the sale of vehicles in the Commonwealth.

The court ruled that the Riverniders violated the consent judgment by selling a 2011 Toyota Sienna minivan, a 2000 Mitsubishi Galant and a 2011 Mercury Grand Marquis through Robert J. Appleton Jr., owner of Your Auto Expert last August. The court also ruled that the Riverniders failed to make the final $100,000 payment due to the Commonwealth under the consent judgment.

The Riverniders routinely lured customers into purchasing cars with false promises of paying-off balances and sweetheart refinancing deals, the consent judgment alleged. The Riverniders, however, allegedly never paid or delayed paying the loan balances off on the trade in vehicles, failed to provide consumers with titles to their cars, and denied the promised refinancing deals.

This matter was handled by Assistant Attorney General Margaret Hurley, Chief of AG Coakley’s Central Massachusetts Regional Office; Assistant Attorney General David Monahan, Deputy Chief of AG Coakley’s Consumer Protection Division, and Investigator Kristen Metzger of AG Coakley’s Public Protection and Advocacy Bureau.