Harrisburg Couple Face Criminal Charges for Defrauding Consumers Through Online Vehicle Sales
Despite legal regulations that aim to prevent it, fraud is always a possibility when you buy a used car. Car dealerships that sell used vehicles sometimes go out of their way to live down the sleazy image that had attached itself to the profession of used car sales. You can tell that a car dealership is trustworthy if they answer your questions directly and thoroughly and if they provide you with adequate written documentation related to your purchase. Of course, it is impossible to get approval for a car loan unless your credit score is high enough to qualify. In that case, your options are limited to sellers that will sell you a car for the amount that you are able to pay in a lump sum. It is no surprise, then, that some consumers turn to Facebook Marketplace in search of affordable vehicles. No matter where you buy a car, the law protects you from fraudulent sales practices. If the car you bought on Facebook turned out to be a lemon, contact a Philadelphia used car fraud lawyer.
Facebook Is Not the Best Place to Buy a Car
Anas Soubai and Ilham Driouich are a married couple living in the Harrisburg area. Until recently, they operated a company called Power Auto Sales LLC, which sold used vehicles on Facebook Marketplace. On their Facebook Marketplace communications, Soubai and Driouich used the screen names Adam Gio and Mercedes Sbai. The trouble was that the defendants did not have a license to operate a car dealership. When buying used vehicles at auction, Soubai allegedly fraudulently used the badge number of another dealership, Four Stars Auto Exchange.
Then the complaints from customers started coming in. People who had bought cars from Soubai and Driouich noticed an array of irregularities with their newly purchased vehicles. These are some of the problems they reported:
- Cars that were not roadworthy
- Counterfeit inspection stickers
- Falsified mileage and model years, to make the cars appear newer than they were
- Lack of required documentation for the sale of vehicles
The biggest problem came when Soubai and Driouich traveled to Cleveland to pick up a 2019 Maserati they had bought on Facebook Marketplace. The sellers did not provide them with a title to the car, but they attempted to sell it anyway, claiming that the title was lost. The car had been reported stolen in Ohio before Soubai and Driouich bought it.
Soubai and Driouich are facing charges for deceptive or fraudulent business practices, theft by deception, dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, and receiving stolen property, in addition to other criminal offenses.
Contact Louis S. Schwartz About Used Car Fraud
Deceptive business practices are against the law, even in online sales. A Philadelphia consumer law attorney can help you if you suffered financial losses because a dealership misrepresented the condition of a car you were buying. Contact Louis S. Schwartz at CONSUMERLAWPA.com to set up a free, confidential consultation.