Thief targets valley couple selling car online

- Craigslist is a popular place to buy and sell anything including cars, but one valley couple says selling their set of wheels on the site has allowed thieves to steal the title to their car.

There are a variety of scam artists out there who make it seem like they are interested car buyers, but they're really just trying to rip honest people off.

It's a sweet car, a 2008 Mustang GT in mint condition with less than 30,000 miles. Mary Decarolis and her husband are trying to sell it online for $18,500.

"On Saturday morning we got a text, they wanted to see it. So we said oh fine, we will send you the carfax," said Decarolis.

Mary says the form had the car's vehicle ID number or VIN on it.

"Yesterday he received a call from a DPS Officer saying two liens had been taken against our car," said Decarolis.

Mary says the thieves used the VIN to get a fraudulent title to her car.

So how much did the thieves get?

"He told me one of the loans was for $10,000," she said.

"I feel violated. I feel like they took something we worked hard for and took advantage of us," said Decarolis.

What would she say to the thief?

"Get a real job, don't take advantage of the people that work hard for a living," said Decarolis.

In this case, a loan company employee grew suspicious and called the Department of Public Safety, which is investigating how to give Decarolis the title back to their car.  DPS says if you're selling a car, never take a cashier's check. Make the buyer go to the bank, cash the check, and hand the cash to you.

If you're selling or buying a car, Carfax has tips about how to avoid becoming a victim of VIN fraud.


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