Retailer Curacao Accused of Unlawful Business Practices by California Attorney General
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra accused Curacao, a Southern California electronics retailer that caters to Latinos, of various unlawful business practices in a civil lawsuit filed last month. Becerra alleged that Curacao’s practices harmed consumers and in some cases resulted in shoppers paying substantially more for products and services than advertised. According to the suit, the 12-store Curacao chain engaged in misleading advertising and provided unwanted “add-ons” such as warranties and installation services. The chain also allegedly failed to honor warranties and returns, and engaged in illegal debt-collection policies. Becerra stated,
They are taking advantage of people who work very hard, who don’t have very much money and who believe that they’ll get fair treatment.
Curacao believes the lawsuit is “baseless” and said it was “confident that when the facts are presented in court, they will disprove the attorney general’s unfounded and sensational claims.” Curacao said that it gave Becerra’s office full access to its stores, employees and records, during a yearlong investigation and that “the attorney general’s office identified only a handful of incidents allegedly supporting its claims.” However, Curacao claims that in each case it showed “[it] had already done everything in our power to address the customers’ concerns” before Becerra’s office got involved. The lawsuit seeks a permanent injunction against Curacao to stop the alleged practices, along with penalties and restitution for customers, which will be determined at trial. If Becerra’s allegations against Curacao are true, it could be a big issue for the company and its relationship with the Latino community.