My question involves a consumer law issue in the State of: California
Last week I purchased a used car from a private seller on craigslist for $1800 cash. The car had issues after a 15 minute drive, it started smoking, sputtering and stalling, but I was able to get it to a repair shop and spent $600 to repair it to functioning. The ad claimed the car to have 120,000 miles which is approximately what the odometer read. But the next day, I saw an oil change sticker at the very top of the windshield which read 262,xxx miles with the date of 8-6-11. I then looked the car up on carfax and verified that the car had at least 258,xxx miles. Two days after the purchase, I had to replace the battery at $100. Furthermore, the title of the car is not in the sellers name, he told me he was selling it for a friend. But I looked up the address on the title on google maps and it doesn't seem to exist, the title looks legit though. I haven't been to the DMV yet because it seemed like the seller wanted me to go to the DMV right away. I want to be sure of what action I should take.
As far as evidence goes, I have a text message from the seller which shows an address which I met him at, an email from him which says, "check it out...(the address where I was to meet him)," I think I have his name and possibly his address, I have the craigslist ad he posted and the receipts from the repair shop and battery purchase.
Legally, what can I do? I would either like $1000 back to compensate for the extra mileage and keep the car, or $2400 for the car and repairs I put into it. I would also like to know if this guy is a crook and see that he doesn't do this to anyone else.
I understand I made a stupid decision in buying this car, I didn't really understand what I was getting myself into. But is there anything I can do?