L.A. Company Quick Lift Shut Down Following Third 'Predatory Towing' Conviction

Ever wonder what happens to those towing companies that illegally hook up cars and hold them hostage until owners can bail them out? It looks like at least one such firm is going to pay (and you're going to cheer). The Los Angeles City Attorney's office announced Tuesday that Quick Lift Inc. has shut down after the douchebag firm was ordered by a Superior Court judge to cease operations.

The company was convicted for "predatory and illegal business practices," including excessive fees for towing and storage, failing to provide towing authorization, and failure to give owners contact information, according to a City Attorney's statement. (This sounds like grand theft auto to us).

As part of a plea deal, CEO Jose Maria Portocarrero agreed to shut Quick Lift's doors last week and pay $1,461 in restitution to seven victims. He received three years of probation and 30 days of community service, with a 45-day jail sentence hanging over his head if he didn't abide.

The City Attorney's office received 10 complaints alleging that the company illegally or improperly hooked up cars in November 2008 and December 2009. (Because the holidays is when you want your car to disappear into a $100-a-day storage vortex).

Quick Lift was no stranger to the authorities. It was prosecuted for similar, "predatory towing practices" in 2006 and 2008, according to the City Attorney's office. Which brings up the question of how to stomp out these cockroaches for good: Perhaps if they try this again we should hook up their homes, tow them away and demand storage fees.

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