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Three years ago, undercover state investigators drove a 2000 Chevrolet Malibu into the Midas/Speedee branch at 1797 Soscol Ave. 

The investigator picked the car up a few days later and found a newly installed, damaged part leaking gasoline into the engine, according to a lawsuit filed by the state Attorney General in June. 

Now, the Napa County District Attorney's office has filed a lawsuit against parent company CRC Luxury Motors and store operator Curtis Correll, claiming they performed bad repairs, and repairs that were unnecessary or not approved, among other violations, according to a statement released Tuesday. 

A man who said his name is Curtis at the Midas store was reached by phone, but said he was unable to speak at that time. He did not provide a last name or immediately return the Register's request for a comment. 

The state Bureau of Automotive Repair conducted three undercover operations at the Napa branch in recent years, where investigators determined employees committed fraud, made false or misleading statements, did not follow trade standards and more, according to the Attorney General's lawsuit. 

The business formerly operated as Soscol Auto Repair, according to the state's lawsuit.

The bureau began an investigation into the business after receiving complaints that employees oversold to customers, gave false and misleading statements, committed fraud and operated under unfair business practices. Four meetings between representatives of the store and Bureau of Automotive Repair occurred in 2014 and 2015, but similar complaints continued after the store became a Midas/Speedee branch.

The Better Business Bureau gave the branch an F rating for failing to respond to any of the three complaints filed with the bureau. The business is not accredited by the BBB.

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Investigations were also performed at CRC Luxury Motors branches in Petaluma and Vacaville, where local District Attorneys are also filing complaints against the company and Correll, according to the Napa County DA's statement. 

Midas International Corporation, which franchises Midas branches, agreed to settle a lawsuit filed by the county, and pay $150,000 to wronged customers and $50,000 in civil penalties. 

Customers who think they were victimized by any of the branches may be eligible to receive payment if they file a complaint with the Bureau of Automotive Repair or the District Attorney's office. They should be prepared to show documentation to support their claim. 

 

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Public Safety Reporter

Courtney Teague is the Napa Valley Register public safety reporter. She can be reached at 707-256-2221. You can follow her reporting on Twitter and Facebook, or send her anonymous tip at: tinyurl.com/anonymous-tipbox-courtney.