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Hertz Under Scrutiny: Senators Call for Investigation After Hundreds of Rental Car Customers Claim False Arrest
After hundreds of Hertz rental car customers came forward with allegations of being falsely arrested, Senators are calling for an investigation into the company. Customers have reported that they were detained and handcuffed after Hertz employees accused them of stealing their cars.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., who chairs the Senate’s Consumer Protection Subcommittee, said in a statement that the allegations against Hertz are “troubling” and “raise serious concerns about Hertz’s business practices.”
The senator also requests details on Hertz’s stolen vehicle reporting protocols and procedures and prompt action by Hertz to compensate consumers who have been wrongfully arrested and have suffered long-term consequences.
Senator Blumenthal also wrote a letter to Stephen Scherr, CEO of Hertz Global Holdings Inc. saying, “I write to express serious alarm over reports suggesting that Hertz has, for years, wrongly reported customers to law enforcement for vehicle theft.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., wrote to the White House Competition Council last week, requesting that it investigate whether rental vehicle sector concentration has resulted in higher costs and poor customer service.
“Disturbing pattern (that) has resulted in unpleasant experiences, job losses, and even jail time for clients,” Warren said. “I am concerned that Hertz’s conduct may be part of a larger pattern of anticompetitive and abusive behavior by the company.”
Customers have reported that they were detained and handcuffed after Hertz employees accused them of stealing their cars. More than 220 Hertz customers have indicated Hertz has charged them with theft of rental cars.
Hertz responded to the allegations in a statement, indicating, “Hertz takes these allegations very seriously. We are currently investigating these claims and will take appropriate action based on the findings of our investigation.”
“The great majority of these incidents involve renters who were weeks or months late returning vehicles and who stopped interacting with us long past the planned due date,” Hertz said in the statement.
After a CBS News investigation, a bankruptcy court in Delaware required Hertz to make documents relating to the allegations public.