Several say same mechanic ripped them off

'He dismantled my whole car,' man told News 6.

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – How do you know the mechanic working on your car is qualified to do it?
A News 6 investigation found numerous victims who say they lost thousands of dollars to the same man.

"Do not take your car to this man," Hector Vidal told News 6.

He said he took his car to Lenny Matranga, the owner of L&M Mobile Mechanic and Roadside Inc., in Orlando.

 Vidal said Matranga was supposed to replace the transmission in his 2005 Honda Accord, instead he kept the car nearly four months and never fixed it, according to Vidal.

"He dismantled my whole car.  He took the whole car apart, didn't even have the decency to put the car back together, and give it to me," Vidal said while showing Investigator Louis Bolden car parts in his trunk.

Vidal is now the fifth person to come forward accusing Matranga of taking their money and not repairing their vehicle.
Matranga has been investigated by the state twice in the past, but each time the investigation was closed according to records.
News 6 has interviewed multiple victims, who tell a similar story.  They all accuse Matranga of taking their money, keeping their cars for months, and never repairing it.
They all had to have their vehicles towed from his shop back to their homes.

 "This was a crime and the cops and nobody want to do anything about it," Vidal said.

Police said it was a civil issue according to Vidal and the other accusers.

"Most people feel as if they can't have their voices heard when there's a smaller amount in jeopardy," attorney Matt Morgan told News 6.

Consumers can fight back in small claims court without hiring an expensive attorney, but sometimes consumers don't, possibly because they don't know the process according to Morgan.

"What they don't know is its really easy to go over to county court and hold these people accountable," he said.

The whole process can be done online and just takes a few minutes.  The first step is filling out your name and information and the information of the person you have the conflict with, and the amount of damages you believe you're entitled to.

Then you pay a filing fee which is proportionate to the amount of the claim, for example a claim of $100 to $500 will cost $80 to file, according to the Orange County Clerk's website.

Finally you have the defendant "served" which is a notice to them of the suit.

"What consumers need to know is they do have the option to fight back in situations like this where they feel as if they are not being treated fairly," Morgan said.

News 6 tried multiple times to contact Matranga , but never got a response.

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