Scammers Allegedly Rent Chevy Suburban From Enterprise, Sell It On Craigslist For $30K

Image courtesy of Chevrolet

Every day, across the country, there are plenty of commercial transactions that take place in fast-food parking lots, and which originated on Craigslist, which are entirely legitimate. This was not one of them. Two man put together a strange and clever scheme: they flew to Nashville, rented a Chevrolet Suburban worth $60,000, put a fake plate on it, and forged documents saying that it didn’t belong to Enterprise. Then they listed it for sale on Craigslist.

Arguably, this sale falls under what we like to call the Gas Station Parking Lot Principle, which tells us that there are no amazing deals to be had from people who walk up to you in parking lots, offering to sell you an iPad for $80. For example. Similarly, if you see an SUV listed for half of the normal list price on Craigslist, it is not an amazing deal. It is a scam. Stay away.

Yet the man who thought he got a pretty fab deal on a new car learned that there was something wrong with the transaction after all. If he didn’t suspect that something was wrong when he bought the vehicle for such a low price, maybe he should have been suspicious when the men who sold it to him zoomed off (in a second rental car, apparently) without even counting the $30,000 in cash that he gave them.

He learned that there really was a problem, though, when he went to register the vehicle and learned that it was actually registered to the parent company of Enterprise Rent-A-Car.

The two car-sellers allegedly used fake IDs and stolen credit cards to rent the vehicle in the first place. Airport police say that they flew in from Houston to carry out their scheme, then flew home with the cash.

The car-buyer, however, doesn’t have anything to show for it. He thought that he was getting an amazing deal, but got scammed instead, and now doesn’t have his cash or his car. “The detective told me I probably wouldn’t see the money again, that they probably wouldn’t even see jail time,” he told the Daily Beast. “That’s what I don’t understand. If I’d stolen it, I’d be in jail already.”

The car salesmen aren’t in jail: according to police, they’re still out there, apparently in Houston.

Nashville Thieves Rent a Car and Then Sell It at McDonald’s [Daily Beast]

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