Even though car buying has changed a lot, there’s still one thing that remains the same: There are a lot of shady characters taking advantage of people. Rarely do these scammers face justice, but the law did manage to catch up with a crooked dealer in Utah, who now has to pay back the money he took in addition to serving a sentence with an ankle bracelet.
According to a report in The Daily Herald, Josue Javier pled guilty to numerous felonies including communication fraud and theft by deception for scamming car buyers. Prosecutors provided evidence that Javier sold 18 cars to buyers that he did not own nor possess the titles for. When buyers could not register these cars and confronted Javier he would try to get them to buy a more expensive car or refuse to return their money.
Court documents state that Javier also sold a car to a buyer that was totaled by flooding without disclosing the damage. Javier apparently engaged in some next level “stealership” tactics.
Judge Darold McDade ordered Javier to serve 120 days in prison and pay back a total of $124,915 to his victims, $25,000 of which must be paid back within 75 days. However, rather than send him behind bars, the Judged agreed to have him serve his via GPS monitoring so he can work to pay his restitution.
I get emails on a weekly basis from buyers who were taken in by similar operations like Javier ran. I give pretty much the same advice to everyone, - If you think a dealer acted illegally you should contact a local consumer protection attorney. Most of these lawyers will give you a consultation at no charge and they love nothing more than going after dealers that are out to scam people.