RALEIGH, N.C. —  A roofing contractor is being sued by North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein for allegedly defrauding North Carolinians following Hurricane Florence in 2018.

According to a release from Stein's office, Dennis Daugherty, his Illinois-based company Green Lantern Services, and his North Carolina company Green Lantern Roofing and Restoration, came to coastal North Carolina after Hurricane Florence hit and went door to door falsely claiming to be a licensed contractor.

“Dennis Daugherty saw North Carolinians struggling to rebuild their homes after Hurricane Florence as an opportunity to make a quick buck, we allege in our complaint,” said Stein. “When businesses trick their customers, I’ll take them to court.”

The suit also states that Daugherty claimed to have dozens of employees available to repair homes, but demanded advance payments — often from the insurance proceeds that customers received after they submitted an insurance claim. The defendants urged customers to sign a contract requiring them to sign over their insurance check.

After the contract was signed, the defendants deceived consumers by doing minimal and shoddy work, failing to pay subcontractors, stringing consumers along with false promises to complete the work, and ultimately abandoning the projects without refunding the substantial sums received from consumers.

According to the release, because customers had already signed over their insurance payments, they were unable to get additional relief from the insurance companies to complete the repairs and were forced to pay out of their own pockets. The North Carolina Department of Justice's Consumer Protection Division received nine complaints from customers who paid a total of more than $250,000 to the defendants.

Stein is asking the court to issue a preliminary injunction against the defendants to prevent them from doing business in North Carolina as the lawsuit continues. He is also seeking restitution, injunctive relief, civil penalties, and attorney fees.