Steve Cohen, who represents Jim Mazz Auto/National Towing, says the City of Buffalo removed National Towing from their list of approved companies earlier this year, giving the company no reason as to why. Even after complying with City directives in an effort to be returned to the list, the City, specifically the Commissioner of Parking Enforcement Kevin Helfer, refused to place them on the list or give anyone a reason why he wouldn’t.
Read the notice of claim HERE.
The Notice of Claim, a procedure in advance of a lawsuit, served upon the City late today, states, “That Defendants City of Buffalo and Commissioner Helfer engaged in a course of conduct consisting of predatory pricing, monopoly formation for their own benefit, price trusts, price fixing, abuse of authority, and public corruption.”
The lawsuit indicates that Buffalo Police officers were taking kickbacks from tow truck operators, a practice that was raised by Jim Mazz Auto/National Towing during the term of Mayor Anthony Masiello and subsequently stopped by that administration.
Mayor Byron Brown told reporters there is an ongoing investigation and would not go into specifics of Wednesday's raid. He only said the investigation centered around wrongdoing in the towing industry within city limits.