Hertz to pay $168 million for falsely reporting stolen vehicles causing customers to be imprisoned

The CEO of Hertz is sorry, so sorry for misplacing returned rental vehicles and then reporting them as stolen, causing honest customers to be locked in jail in some cases for six months or more. Not sorry enough to voluntarily compensate victims, of course. Hertz waited for a lawsuit, contesting the claims until it was forced to cough up $168 million.

"In all cases, Hertz's goal is to protect its profits and cut its costs, even if it knows their own customers will lose their liberty and freedom as a result," said the lawsuit against Hertz.

"In February, after a U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge in Delaware ruled that Hertz must make public the number of people it filed complaints against, the company revealed it was filing thousands of police reports each year," reported The New York Times.

The Times gives examples of people falsely imprisoned by Hertz's recklessly negligent behavior:

According to another lawsuit filed in the same court in 2020, a woman was arrested in April 2019 in Broward County, Fla., after extending and paying for her Hertz rental car. She spent 37 days in jail, where she was separated from her fiancé and two children, missed her nursing school graduation and discovered she was pregnant, according to the suit.

In another instance, a man who turned himself in to authorities in Gwinnett County, Ga., in 2018, after learning there was a warrant for his arrest on charges that he stole a Hertz car, had actually paid for and returned the vehicle, according to court records. After missing a hearing date, he was arrested again, and jailed for six and a half months, documents state.

By way of apology, Hertz CEO Stephen Scherr said his company would "not always be perfect."