An auto loan company that allegedly offered illegal loans to Oregon residents is being sued by Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum’s office. The lawsuit claims the company - which used several aliases, including Auto loans LLC, Car Loans LLC and Sovereign Lending Solutions - is repossessing cars when consumers fail to pay back loans.

Rosenblum’s office claims the company sold loans to at least 250 Oregonians in exchange for getting listed as a security interest holder on their car titles. According to the lawsuit, the company isn’t licensed to offer loans in Oregon and charges annual interest rates of 181% to 334%.

The company is running a multi-layered fraud, according to the lawsuit. The operation's real name is Liquidation LLC and it’s incorporated in the Cook Islands, a haven for companies trying to protect their assets from lawsuits, according to various sources including a 2013 New York Times article.

Althea Cullen, an assistant attorney general working the case, said the lawsuit seeks to bar Liquidation LLC from Oregon. She also hopes victims will get their money back. The loans offered allegedly violated Oregon’s Unfair Trade Practices Act, and those triple-digit interest rates aren’t legal, according to the lawsuit. 

Oregon is among a handful of states that allow title loans, but limit the interest rates lenders can charge. 

A judge already has frozen several U.S. bank accounts associated with Liquidation LLC, Cullen said.

"In terms of restitution, it’s something we seek within the complaint, but these are ghosts and we’ll see what we can track down," she said. "If you’re a consumer that’s affected by this, you should know that these are illegal loans, making collection on the loan illegal. Registered collection agents in Oregon are all aware that any collection activity on these loans is illegal."

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