Undercover operation puts towing company out of business

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne has put a deceitful towing and auto repair company out of business.

Horne announced on Thursday that his ongoing auto repair sting operations have forced Sun Valley Towing to close their doors.

A recent judgment against Sun Valley Towing ordered the company to pay the maximum civil penalties of $590,000 and $67,580.59 in restitution to customers.

The court also issued a permanent injunction against Sun Valley Towing preventing them from conducting any auto repairs, tow operations, vehicle sales, and vehicle service.

“This is the second judgment to result from our ongoing undercover auto sting operations,” stated Horne. “The many serious complaints we received from Sun Valley customers were validated when Sun Valley Towing was caught red handed charging for repairs they never performed.”

During the course of the state's sting operation, an automotive repair expert turned off a vehicle’s inertia fuel cutoff switch and then called Sun Valley Towing for assistance.

Sun Valley Towing took the vehicle to their shop where a mechanic corrected the problem by simply resetting the inertia fuel cutoff switch.

Sun Valley Towing’s owner, Tim Kunselman, then charged an undercover officer $340 for replacing the fuel pump.

Not only was the fuel pump not replaced, but it was an unnecessary repair.

Along with their undercover operation, the state’s lawsuit against Sun Valley Towing included 59 complaints from customers alleging that the company failed to make repairs, kept vehicles for several months, and returned vehicles in worse condition.