A South Florida man says he was stunned to see what was stuck to his car after he paid to get it painted. Take a look with Karen Hensel in tonight’s 7 Investigates.

Emilio Madrigal loves driving his 2011 BMW, but the car was starting to show its age.

So he took it to MAACO on Southwest 117th Court to fix the dings and get it painted.

Emilio Madrigal, car owner: “They were going to take care of me, and they were going to do a good job. Nothing, nothing. This is basically, you know, a poor man’s nightmare.”

A nightmare he says because only after he picked up the car and paid $2,400 cash did he see what he had just paid for.

Emilio Madrigal: “So I had to take the car and wash it and clean it and then figure out what was going on.”

And that’s when he became frustrated.

Emilio Madrigal: “They even painted the car dirty, because if you see, there were pieces of grass and leaves stuck to the paint.”

When we looked at the car, there was debris under the paint, paint drips and some areas like this one under the side mirror.

Emilio Madrigal: “Look, they did an overspray over here too.”

We also saw the overspray on the chrome.

Emilio Madrigal: “As you can see, there is another leaf mark, where they basically painted the vehicle dirty.”

According to the payment receipt, Emilio paid for parts, labor and materials for body work as well as the new paint job.

Not happy with the final finish, Emilio says he called the shop repeatedly and three times actually drove to the location to speak with the manager, Luis.

Emilio Madrigal: “It’s like month after month after month, and the guy refuses to speak with me.”

We also tried to talk with the manager…

Karen Hensel (on the phone): “Hi, my name is Karen Hensel and I’m a reporter with WSVN 7News.”

After repeated attempts, we went in and found the owner, Alex Gonzalez.

Alex Gonzalez, owner: “You will see some particle of dust on each panel.”

Karen Hensel: “It’s not particles.”

Alex Gonzalez: “OK.”

Karen Hensel: “This is, like you can rub your hand over…”

Alex Gonzalez: “Like I said, I haven’t seen the car.”

Karen Hensel: “He’s tried.”

And that’s the rub. Alex Gonzalez said he needs to see the car, but no one would talk with Emilio each time he brought the car back.

Gonzalez told us he knew nothing about that, so we repeatedly asked to then speak to his manager, Luis.

Alex Gonzalez: “He never bring it over.”

Karen Hensel: “He did. And he was told you…”

Alex Gonzalez: “…He talked to Luis. That’s something that I’m going to talk to him about, all right?”

Karen Hensel: “Can we talk to Luis?”

Alex Gonzalez: “I’m trying to. I don’t see him.”

Here’s what we saw: Miami-Dade County records that show other complaints against this MAACO, including several describing “poor workmanship” and “bad paint job.”

Some were corrected, but others were not.

Pedro Armas, Jesti Body Shop: “When I saw this car that got done, supposedly got done, and it got brought to our shop, I couldn’t believe it.”

After six months of frustration, Emilio finally took his car to another body shop.

Pedro Armas: “There was dirt, stuff that was blown from the ground and got stuck to the car, and then they didn’t care, and they paint over it.”

Now, after weeks of prep, Emilio’s car is ready to be repainted. After we talked with the MAACO body shop owner, he agreed to meet with Emilio once the car is done to try to come to some sort of agreement. We will follow-up.

Karen Hensel, 7News.


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