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Customers sue credit union after Ozark motorcycle dealer disappears

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After an Ozark motorcycle dealer closed earlier this month, customers began filing police reports, online complaints and now a class-action lawsuit.

Midwest Cycle Center1 LC, Pro Action Auto LLC and Powersports Protection LLC operated at 1949 W. Boat St. near Lambert’s Cafe and were owned by Nate Powers, aka Nathan Powers McClellan, according to lawsuit documents. They closed May 23.

Springfield law firm Aleshire Robb & Rapp filed a class-action suit in Greene County Circuit Court on June 12 against BluCurrent Credit Union. The finance company provided loan contracts for Midwest Cycle Center, which sold used motorcycles, Pro Action Auto, which sold used cars, and Powersports Protection, which sold extended warranties and guaranteed auto protection, according to law firm partner Greg Aleshire.

The suit alleges the insurance products sold by Powersports Protection were worthless and illegally sold.

“In order to sell those products, you have to be registered and qualified by the Missouri Division of Insurance,” he said. “And the Missouri Division of Insurance requires you to either purchase an underlying insurance policy that backs that up or post a security bond through a bonding company, or I believe you have to have a $50 million net worth. None of those things were done.”

Because the businesses ceased operating, BluCurrent is subject to the claims of the consumers, Aleshire said, as the holder of the retail installment contracts. BluCurrent officials could not be reached immediately for comment by deadline.

“In those contracts there is a holder clause,” he said. “And the holder clause provides that any claims or defenses the buyer has against the seller, they also have against the holder of that retail installment contract.”

Tim Clothier, chief of police for the city of Ozark, said eight customers have filed complaints and four of them have been resolved. He doesn’t know why the businesses closed, but said the owner provided Mary Powers as the person people should contact to address problems and a phone number by which to reach her. At issue for the Police Department are customers who did not receive the title for a vehicle purchased or who left motorcycles on the property for consignment and now are missing.

Aleshire said around June 2, an unnamed company that finances the dealership’s inventory repossessed the cars and motorcycles and took them to various auto auctions.

“At this point in time, we are communicating with the Christian County prosecuting attorney’s office,” Clothier said, “Not because we think there will be criminal charges but so that the Christian County prosecutor has knowledge of what’s going on, in the event that is an avenue we have to proceed with later on.”

Midwest Cycle Center’s voicemail box is full, its website is down, its Craigslist account is empty and Google Maps lists it as permanently closed. Springfield Business Journal called Mary Powers, but no one answered or returned a voicemail.

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