SCAM: Man Buys Car With Clean CARFAX And Title, Turns Out To Be Stolen
October 5th, 2018
This scam that took place in Middle Tennessee now has the attention of local and federal investigators in several states. Local news channel WSMV 4 reports that James Owens bought a car that was stolen even though it had a clean CARFAX report and title.
Owens loves cars and has quite a collection in his home garage. He owns everything from a '61 Corvette to a 2015 Challenger. The stolen car he purchased was a 2017 Challenger. In January, Owens purchased the Challenger for $26,000 from Chicago Fine Motors before watching a criminal investigator take it away on a trailer.
When Owens tried to register his new vehicle's VIN on the manufacturer's website, he was told the VIN didn't exist. The GM of Chicago Fine Motors told WSMV4 that he bought the vehicle at Manheim Auto Auction in Chicago and that Manheim got scammed as well after buying almost $2 million worth of cars from one seller that were all stolen. They all had false VIN numbers and fake titles from the state of Wisconsin, where titling laws aren't as strict.
Chicago Fine Motors gave Owens his money back but his problem is with CARFAX and how they didn't realize this was a stolen vehicle. There is currently a criminal investigation going on with federal agencies and the insurance investigators who aren't processing anything until they find out what happened. Owens did everything right - got a CARFAX, bought from a reputable dealer so how do you prevent this from happening? That's what the case is looking into. Luckily for Owens, the dealership backed him up and gave him his money back but someone else may be not as lucky.