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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
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    Default Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    My question involves a consumer law issue in the State of: Washington
    Hello,
    So I purchased a vehicle on Craigslist and without my knowledge it was stolen. At the time of purchase there was the Title to the vehicle, registration and all service maintenance records since purchased new including invoice. I then resold the vehicle to two gentlemen without transferring the title over to my name. The Auto Task Forced came over to my house today and now told me it was stolen and that the person I sold it to tried to sell it to a Dealership. So in my case what happens to me? The Detective said I just need to come in a make my statement and show my records that Ive communicate with the person that stole the vehicle. Can the two guys that I sold the vehicle do anything to me as far as on the legal side, because right now they are down $15,000 out of their pockets because the car was taken back. I had no intentions or was ever aware of the vehicle being stolen, so does it mean I am off the hook because they had tried to sell the vehicle to the dealership or what will happen? Therefore, there is Party A,B,C,D. I am party B that bought the car from party A. Please any feedback or insight in regards to this would be greatly appreciate it.

  2. #2
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    Sep 2011
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    OH10
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    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    How was the vin on the stolen car conveyed from buyer to buyer? Had it been altered or did the title not match the vin?
    Dear Santa. For Xmas this year I want a fat bank account and a slim body. Please don't mix them up again.
    Why do stores in the US have so many undocumented shoppers?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    27,810

    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    You do realize that selling it without first putting it in your name is a crime in itself, right?

    Beyond that, that surely makes you look guilty and aware that it was stolen.

    I would suspect you will be on the hook for the cash to whomever you sold it to plus dealing in stolen merchandise. You need a lawyer now and you need to stop talking to the police about this situation.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
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    2

    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    Hello JK,
    Thank you for the prompt response. I have printed all call records and text that I came in contact with the person I bought it from. In addition, I have a witness which is my brother that went with me to pick up the vehicle at the time of purchase. Wouldnt I be in the same boat as the person I sold it to because they had tried to sell it to a Dealership? The deal seem very legit they had title on hand, keys and everything at the time of purchase. Prior to purchasing the vehicle I even had Carfax the car itself.

  5. #5
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    Jan 2006
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    27,810

    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    the fact you did not put it in your name before shuffling it off to another party is a serious problem in your argument. That makes it look like you were aware of the problem and were part of the illegal activities.

    Why didn't you put the vehicle in your name?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    74,891

    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    Scenario #1: You buy a vehicle from "Mr. Craigslist", pay $14,600 with a check made out to the seller, and turn around and inside a few days sell it for $15,000.

    Scenario #2: You buy a vehicle from "Mr. Craigslist", pay $2,000 cash, turn around and inside a few days sell it for $15,000 and claim to have no idea who "Mr. Craigslist" was or how the authorities might reach him.

    In the former scenario you look like somebody duped on Craigslist and have plenty of information to give to the police documenting your purchase and the resale, even at a small profit, suggests that you paid close to market value. In the second, you look like you are lying and are at best part of the scheme, if not the actual car thief. There would be a spectrum of variations in between the two extremes.

    Surely you didn't show up to meet some random person on Craigslist with $12,000+ in cash, at a public location to which he cannot be traced, to buy a vehicle you knew you could easily flip for a significant profit, did you? If so, do you have the word "sucker" tattooed on your forehead?

    You sold a car you didn't own, so I expect the people you "sold" the car to will want their $15,000 back.

    For the record, if you look at craigslist car ads they shove this warning in your face:
    Quote Quoting How to recognize a vehicle scam attempt on CL:

    • Shipping a vehicle to you is suggested by seller
    • eBay Motors or another intermediary is specified by seller
    • Payment by Western Union or a money wire is requested
    • Price is unusually low (fraction of blue book value)

    If you see these tell-tale signs, flag ad as "prohibited" and avoid....

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    OH10
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    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    You did not answer the question about the vin and the title? You may face charges for kiting the title to avoid taxes at the very least.
    Dear Santa. For Xmas this year I want a fat bank account and a slim body. Please don't mix them up again.
    Why do stores in the US have so many undocumented shoppers?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    27,810

    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    If it is a federal crime, why are the local boys investigating it? Federal authorities investigate federal crimes. State or more local boys investigate state or more local crimes.


    So, not only did you skip the title, you acknowledge it was with intent to defraud the state by not paying sales tax



    You need to stop talking to anybody other than a lawyer. Whether you were a knowing party to the crime or not, you have committed several crimes and you admitting to those crimes is not going to help. Stop talking now and contact a lawyer.



    nor had any intentions scamming anyone.
    that is obviously not true. You did intend on scamming the state out of the ~$2k.

  9. #9
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    Jan 2006
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    27,810

    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    Quote Quoting kevin425637
    View Post
    This is getting way over my head and lots of stress. I want to thank you to both for your responses. Under which topic attorney should I try to connect and consult this matter with? What will happened if I sold it to avoid the fee of the taxes?
    I would start looking for a criminal defense attorney. You are under suspicion of being complicit with the stolen vehicle issue. Whether the cops you are talking to are concerned about the title skipping and tax evasion or not is unknown. They may totally ignore those issues, maybe not. It isn't worth admitting to a crime though and hoping it all ends there.


    attempting to evade paying taxes is tax fraud. It is a crime. Whether the state would prosecute it or settle for you paying the taxes is up to them. You need to stop talking about it though, seriously.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    OH10
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    Default Re: Bought a Stolen Car and Resold It

    You can potentially be charged with a felony for the car, a misdemeanor for the vin, which you apparently knew was obscured (you refuse to comment) and likely a misdemeanor over the sales and use tax fraud.
    Dear Santa. For Xmas this year I want a fat bank account and a slim body. Please don't mix them up again.
    Why do stores in the US have so many undocumented shoppers?

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