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AG Horne Announces Lawsuit Accusing Phoenix-Area Gun Dealer Of Defrauding Customers

PHOENIX (Monday, December 12, 2011) -- A Phoenix-area firearms dealer is the subject of a consumer fraud lawsuit filed in Maricopa County Superior Court by Attorney General Tom Horne.

The suit contends that Lancaster Arms, LLC, which is owned by co-defendants Chester and Marsha Durda, defrauded consumers by failing to provide promised merchandise and services to dozens of customers between February of 2009 and September of 2011.

“Protecting consumers is one of the most important jobs of this office,” Horne said. “Businesses such as the one named in this lawsuit cannot be allowed to make promises to customers and not deliver on those promises. The problem is made even worse when, as in this case, some customers made advance payments with the expectation that they would get either merchandise or services in return, and instead they got nothing. The legal action requests that the court order the business to make restitution, pay penalties, and prevent it from defrauding additional consumers.”

According to the complaint, Lancaster Arms claimed to consumers, some of whom worked in law enforcement and the military, and to some weapons dealers, on the internet and through personal contact by Chester Durda, that the company sold weapons, parts and accessories and that it provided weapon kit assembly services to consumers who sent their kits to the company. Additionally, Lancaster Arms represented that some of its weapons were subject to its “Limited Life Time Warranty”. The lawsuit alleges that Lancaster Arms failed to ship merchandise that consumers had paid for, failed to repair weapons under warranty, and failed to provide refunds. The lawsuit also alleges that Lancaster Arms failed to assemble weapons kits sent to it by consumers and failed to return the un-assembled kits to the consumers or to provide them with refunds. The complaint asks the court to enter an injunction prohibiting the defendants from engaging in any further unlawful acts, require the defendants to restore money and property to consumers, order the payment of civil penalties of up to $10,000 per violation, and to reimburse the State’s court costs and other related expenses.

The case is being handled by Assistant Attorney General Cherie Howe.

A full copy of the complaint is attached.

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