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ENVIROTEST CHARGES SNAP-ON SUBSIDIARY, SCI, WITH FRAUD; ACTION SAYS ILLEGAL SCHEME DECEIVED STATE AUTHORITIES; SUIT SEEKS $100M IN DAMAGES

 TUSON, Ariz., May 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Envirotest Systems Corp. (NASDAQ-NMS: ENVI) today announced that it and its subsidiary Envirotest Technologies, Inc. ("ETI") have sued Snap-On Tools, Inc. and its subsidiaries, Sun Electric Corporation and Systems Control, Inc. ("SCI"), and SCI's president, F. Robert Miller. The lawsuit, filed in Federal Court in Manhattan, charges that numerous misrepresentations have been made to state authorities regarding the corporate history, experience, operations and capabilities of SCI in an effort to secure long-term contracts for SCI from these states.
 The suit claims that the defendants have engaged in unfair competition under federal and state law and charges Miller with a pattern of fraudulent acts in violation of the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act ("RICO"), and seeks damages of more than $100 million.
 Envirotest and ETI (collectively, the "company") are the leading providers of centralized vehicle emissions testing programs for states and municipalities. The company operates 10 of the 16 contractor- operated centralized programs in North America, and performed over 10.5 million emissions tests in 1992. The company is the most experienced operator in the industry, having performed tests on more than 100 million vehicles since its inception in 1974.
 ETI, originally named Systems Control, Inc., or SCI, was purchased by Envirotest in April, 1992 for $83.5 million. Prior to the purchase, certain assets of ETI were purchased by Sun Electric for approximately $7 million, including permission to use the name SCI in future business. These assets now form the current SCI. Sun Electric was acquired by Snap-On Tools in October 1992.
 Envirotest stated, "The defendants are attempting by their misrepresentations regarding SCI to boot-strap their $7 million asset purchase from ETI into the ownership of an additional $83.5 million of ETI's assets and to obtain by fraud that which they failed to purchase for cash: ETI's corporate history, experience, operations, property and rights.
 "In so doing, Snap-On and the related parties, including SCI, are victimizing not only Envirotest and ETI, but state authorities as well, who are being deliberately misled as to what SCI was in the past, what it now is, and what it owns and operates."
 In its suit, Envirotest makes clear that Snap-On's SCI has victimized the State of Maine authorities with statements to the effect that, among other things, SCI was "...founded in 1992, not 1968; its experience in the automotive and testing field results from its administration of one MVEIP in the State of Washington, which it acquired from plaintiff ETI in April 1992; and the other claims made by the defendants for SCI represent a deliberate effort by them to hold SCI out as the owner and possessor of assets, business operations, experience and capabilities that they well know belong to plaintiffs, not to SCI."
 Envirotest further stated that, "after acquiring these limited assets of ETI in April 1992, Sun Electric formed a division to operate the Washington State contract and seek new business related to the construction and operation of centralized emissions testing programs under the name Systems Control (SCI). This division of Sun Electric hired a handful of the management personnel who had worked for ETI before the acquisition. The division was incorporated on or about Sept. 2, 1992, under the name Systems Control, Inc. On or about Oct. 2, 1992, Snap-On Tools Corporation acquired all the stock of Sun Electric."
 Envirotest emphasized that, "following recent amendments to the Clean Air Act of 1970 and related regulations issued by the Environmental Protection Agency in 1992, approximately 37 states and the District of Columbia are now required to take steps to improve their ability to monitor emissions. As a result, some 15 states are likely to solicit bids for such programs in the near future."
 Envirotest said that, "beginning in April 1992 and continuing through the date of its complaint, Snap-On's SCI has been conducting a campaign deliberately designed to deceive and mislead state officials responsible for awarding MVEIP contracts as to SCI's background, experience, operations and qualifications.
 "For example, SCI distributed or caused to be distributed a corporate brochure to a number of state authorities, including Michigan, stating that SCI:
 -- has over 20 years experience in the automotive testing and vehicle inspection field;
 -- pioneered the development and evaluation of automated testing equipment in partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency;
 -- is the designer, developer, and operator of some of the largest centralized inspection programs in the U.S.;
 -- has implemented six inspection programs requiring the construction of over 58 vehicle inspection facilities and; these stations have been equipped and staffed to conduct over 8.5 million annual vehicle inspections'.
 "All of these statements are false. In each case, the statements described the history and current operations of ETI, not SCI," Envirotest stated.
 In addition, SCI's brochure contains pictures of ETI's operations in Florida and states that they are SCI's emission inspection stations.
 In its suit Envirotest pointed out that "documents released by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection after the announcement of the award demonstrate that the Department erroneously relied on the fraudulent representations made by SCI, credited SCI with experience and capabilities that it falsely claimed to have in its proposal, and failed to credit Plaintiffs Envirotest and ETI with experience that they rightfully own."
 The Envirotest suit further charges, "the pattern of fraudulent misrepresentation continues, and states other than Maine have issued requests for proposals and SCI has submitted responsive proposals...
 "Officials in government agencies in various states are currently relying and will continue to rely on the same or similar fraudulent representations in their evaluations of the relative experience and know-how of SCI and Envirotest. As a result, they will continue to over credit SCI for its alleged prior experience, and under-credit Envirotest for its real prior experience."
 Chester Davenport, Chairman of Envirotest, stated, "SCI's bid documents, corporate literature and other publicly available communications with state authorities provide a convincing paper trail of SCI's scheme to confuse and mislead government officials as to its true qualifications. Among the most stunning and bald faced of SCI's fraudulent statements are those contained in its corporate brochure which claims that SCI has vehicle testing programs in Florida, Maryland, Illinois and Minnesota when, in fact, these are ETI programs. The brochure also displays pictures of ETI's Florida operations and ETI personnel. This conduct is outrageous.
 "We brought these facts to the attention of executives at Snap-On, SCI's parent; and, at a face-to-face meeting, we demanded that Snap-On take immediate action to end these abuses. Unfortunately, Snap-On's management refused to address the matter promptly, and we were forced to file a lawsuit.
 "We are concerned that, wherever SCI is involved, states, currently in the process of selecting centralized contractors, are not receiving accurate information about the experience and personnel of bidders. We simply could not stand by idly as SCI continues to deceive state officials and damage the interests of legitimate companies in an effort to win contracts," Mr. Davenport concluded.
 -0- 5/4/93
 /CONTACT: Robert Siegfried or Richard J. Wolff of Kekst & Company, 212-593-2655, for Envirotest Systems Corp./
 (ENVI)


CO: Envirotest Systems Corp. ST: Arizona IN: SU:

TS -- NY078 -- 4508 05/04/93 16:28 EDT
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