Drivers warned over car selling scam involving gangs damaging vehicles

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The gang in Norfolk is accused of scamming people selling second hand cars by damaging the vehicles during viewings and then offering knocked-down prices for them. Police have now launched an investigation into the group.

The scam works by the gang first arranging to view the car in person after replying to an online advert.

Then while one member distracts the owner, another will damage the car in some way.

The damage will then be pointed out to the owner in order to get a reduced price for the car.

Once the gang have the car they will cheaply repair it and sell it at an inflated value.

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Another report suggested that the gang interfered with the wiring of an engine, causing a warning light to go on – a problem they would have been able to easily rectify once they had purchased the vehicle.

Sellers contacted by phone numbers associated with the gang have been sent a message by AutoTrader telling them to beware.

Another motorist trying to sell a BMW caught the gang on film which caused them to flee.

He said: “They started touching the engine and sides. But the moment they saw me filming they got irate and told me to turn the camera off. They then scarpered.”

An AutoTrader spokesman said: “We actively assist law enforcement to prevent and detect criminal activity or apprehend offenders.

“We take preventative and detective action as soon as we are made aware of issues, and use a number of different technologies to monitor and prevent fraudulent activity on our site.

“We alert customers if we have identified any activity that we believe isn’t legitimate.

“Wherever possible, have a friend or family member with you. Always arrange to meet a buyer at your home, never meet halfway or at their premises.”



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