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Old 08-27-2008, 04:40 PM
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I've been doing more research on Classic Motor Carriages, to flesh out the wiki article on StreetBeasts.

Been accessing the Miami Herald archives, which has plenty of coverage on CMC.

I had heard that employees of the Florida attorney general's office were "involved" in protecting Classic Motor Carriages, but I wanted to verify it. There are some details on this in a February 6, 1995 Miami Herald article, entitled: "A Classic Collision: There's Lots of Finger-Pointing as Car Company Flounders".

Turns out that there were some questionable actions by Rhonda Lapin, the then-Assistant Attorney General in Florida.

Here's how the Miami Herald reported that the complaints against CMC were "referred" to another Florida regulatory agency:

Originally Posted by Miami Herald
Armed with two violated settlements, the attorney general could have sued. Instead, then-Assistant Attorney General Rhonda Lapin referred some of the new complaints to the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services in Tallahassee.

"We could have moved quicker, and I take responsibility for that," said Mike Burnstein, deputy attorney general of the southern region.
And, here's the quote regarding her resignation.

Originally Posted by Miami Herald
The same month, Lapin, who was in charge of the Classic case, resigned from the attorney general's office.

"It was a mutual decision because of a change in the structure of our economic crime unit," Burnstein said. "Classic was among many factors in the decision."
Looks like her shady dealings prompted the Florida Attorney General's office to force a "change in the structure", which pushed her to resign.

I'm going to contact the Herald to see if we can get explicit permission to reprint the articles in our wiki.

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