FBI being sued for crashing a Ferrari

Filed under: Convertible, Performance, Etc., Government/Legal, Ferrari, Luxury

Ferrari F50

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Justice have landed themselves in hot water over the destruction of a Ferrari F50. According to The Detroit News, the vehicle was reported stolen from a dealership in Rosemont, Pennsylvania in 2003, and the dealer made and insurance claim for the sum of $750,000 at that time. Michigan-based Motors Insurance Corp. shelled out the cash, and in August 2008, the FBI recovered the vehicle in Kentucky. At that time, the FBI stored the vehicle while waiting to prosecute the thief, at least until someone at the bureau decided to use it for a little local arbor work.

The Ferrari F50 lost control and struck a tree with an FBI special agent behind the wheel in May of 2009, and Motors Insurance Corp. subsequently filed a claim to both the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice for the full $750,000. Both parties rejected the claim under the pretense that the Ferrari was being detained by the FBI at the time of the incident.

The insurance company then set about submitting Freedom of Information Act requests for documents pertaining to the storage, transportation and handling of the Italian exotic, most of which were denied under federal exemptions or outright ignored. The company did manage to get a hold of one email that said that U.S. Assistant Attorney J. Hamilton Thompson rode with Special Agent Frederick C. Kingston on the day of the accident and that the vehicle fishtailed and slid sideways shortly after leaving the FBI storage warehouse.

Motors Insurance Corp. is now suing both the U.S. Department of Justice and the FBI to release the rest of the documents pertaining to the vehicle.

[Source: The Detroit News | Image: CarPhotoGuru]

FBI being sued for crashing a Ferrari originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 24 Feb 2011 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Former Car Czar Rattner settles with SEC, sued by Cuomo

Filed under: Government/Legal

Steven Rattner

Former White House Auto Industry Task Force member Steven Rattner is being sued by New York State Attorney General and Governor-elect Andrew Cuomo for allegedly paying kickbacks to win investments in the state’s pension fund.

Cuomo is seeking $26 million from Rattner, and to bar him from trading securities in New York for life, an agreement that might hamstring Rattner if he can’t do securities work in New York any longer.

Rattner, who recently penned a book about his time on The Obama task force (“Overhaul,” [Houghton-Mifflin-Harcourt, 2010]) that guided General Motors and Chrysler through bankruptcy, already settled a related case against him brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission, which brought a civil lawsuit against the private equity executive and former New York Times reporter.

Rattner’s former investment firm, Quadrangle, settled with New York State and the SEC last April, which was accompanied by a statement by Quadrangle saying Rattner’s conduct was “inappropriate, wrong and unethical.” Quadrangle agreed to pay $7 million to Cuomo and $5 million to the SEC without admitting or denying wrongdoing.

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Former Car Czar Rattner settles with SEC, sued by Cuomo originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 19 Nov 2010 17:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Axl Rose sued by Bentley for leased car damage, exceeding allowance by 42,000 miles

Filed under: Car Buying, Sedan, Government/Legal, Bentley, Celebrities, Luxury

2006 Bentley Flying Spur

2006 Bentley Continental Flying Spur – Click above to for high-res image gallery

Axl Rose, front man for hard rock band Guns N’ Roses, has an appetite for destruction and his latest target is reportedly a 2006 Bentley Continental Flying Spur. According to celeb dish outlet TMZ.com, Rose is being sued by Bentley over a vehicle he leased. The car was given back several months after its scheduled date of return. That is just icing on a sweet cake of disregard however, as the car was allegedly returned with a cracked windshield, two damaged wheels, a broken taillight, a missing key, dents on the doors and damage to the bumper. Axl or his compadres also racked up serious seat time by going 42,000 miles over the lease limit.

The boys from Crewe have little Patience *ahem* for someone mistreating their property like this, and Bentley is suing Mr. Rose for nearly $74,000.

Gallery: In the Autoblog Garage: 2006 Bentley Continental Flying Spur

Photos Copyright (C)2010 John Neff / AOL

[Source: TMZ]

Axl Rose sued by Bentley for leased car damage, exceeding allowance by 42,000 miles originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 25 Oct 2010 18:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Toyota sued by Allstate over sudden-acceleration insurance claims

Filed under: Government/Legal, Safety, Toyota

Toyota emblem and dealer sign

Like every other automaker, Toyota is always looking to increase the safety of its vehicles, be it through investing millions of dollars towards R&D or incorporating new safety measures as standard equipment. It’s also working hard to fully restore its recently tarnished public image. Hurdles do keep popping up now and again, however, with the latest one has been placed by Allstate. According to the Los Angeles Times, the insurance company is seeking $3 million in compensation as a result of 270 claims of sudden acceleration.

The suit was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court on October 1, 2010. Allstate claims that the suit was a last resort as a result of failed out-of-court negotiations. However, a spokesperson for the automakers says “the unfounded allegations in this suit have no basis.”

Toyota recently announced that it has resolved issues with over five million vehicles, as a result of three main recalls. Nearly two million of the vehicles had stuck accelerator issues while the other three million had their floormats replaced or repaired.

Complaints of sudden acceleration have fallen by 80 percent since April of 2010. At its peak, the claims averaged 800 per week but have since fallen to around 150 per week. Toyota has dispatched safety review teams to examine over 4,000 vehicles and has yet to find an instance of sudden acceleration being caused by anything electrical. Regardless, the automaker is increasing the standard safety features fitted to its vehicles, the latest of which is Smart-Stop, a brake override system that engages when the throttle is open greater than 33 percent, the vehicle speed is over 5 miles per hour and the brakes are pressed firmly. Allstate believes that Toyota vehicles should already have featured this technology.

[Source: Los Angeles Times | Image: Ramin Talaie/Getty]

Toyota sued by Allstate over sudden-acceleration insurance claims originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 05 Oct 2010 15:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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