AG files suit against Medrano Express for failure to deliver
Release date: 6/18/2014
Consumers paid to ship packages that never arrived, Cooper says
Raleigh: International shipping company Medrano Express should return consumers’ missing packages or reimburse them, Attorney General Roy Cooper said in a lawsuit filed this week.
“Businesses have a responsibility to complete their end of the deal with consumers,” Cooper said. “Packages should be delivered to their rightful owners or paid for.”
Cooper filed a complaint in Wake County Superior Court Tuesday against Medrano Express and individual defendants Jorge Medrano, Telma Ayala and William Velasco. Cooper is asking the court to order the defendants to return all unshipped packages to consumers. If a package cannot be returned, Cooper is asking that Medrano Express reimburse consumers for the value of the package’s contents.
The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division filed the lawsuit and request for a temporary restraining order after 118 consumers complained that Medrano Express had never delivered packages as promised, provided false shipping date estimates and/or failed to return undelivered packages or provide refunds. Cooper is also seeking a permanent ban against the owners’ and managers’ deceptive practices, refunds of shipping costs for consumers and civil penalties.
Medrano Express specialized in shipping items to Columbia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Mexico but is no longer operating. The shipping company, based in Hempstead, N.Y., also operated under the names Global Cargo and Diamond Shipping. The company had locations in at least 20 states, including locations in Raleigh and Charlotte.
Cooper contends Medrano Express accepted packages with no intention of ever delivering them. Instead, Medrano Express stored the packages at multiple sites across the country. When customers called to ask when their packages would be delivered, Medrano Express claimed the packages were in transit or being held at Customs in either the United States or in the destination country.
The Federal Maritime Commission and Miami Dade Consumer Protection recently found more than 200 boxes collected by Medrano Express for shipment abandoned in a warehouse in Miami. At least some of the packages appear to have been shipped from Medrano Express locations in Raleigh and could belong to North Carolina residents. Two packages from the warehouse have been matched with North Carolina residents to date.
Any North Carolina consumer who shipped packages through Medrano Express that did not arrive should contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division immediately. Help is available in English or Spanish. There is no guarantee that a consumer’s package is in this particular warehouse, but Cooper’s office wants to try to help return as many packages to their rightful owners as possible.
Call the Consumer Protection Division at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM (toll-free within North Carolina) or (919) 716-0058 (Spanish language line). People can also file a consumer complaint online in English or Spanish at ncdoj.gov.
Contact: Noelle Talley (919) 716-6413