Jury Indicts Trio for Salvage Car Sales Featured
08 February 2018
A federal grand jury indicted three people in connection with a scheme to misrepresent salvage vehicles as cars with clean titles.Inna Chebanenko, Andrii Gerasymenko and Georgy Zakalyugin were charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Although the alleged fraud took place in New York, the defendants were arrested in Illinois. According to the court documents, between 2013 and 2016, the defendants conspired to defraud car buyers in Brooklyn and elsewhere by concealing the fact that the cars were “salvage” or “rebuilt” vehicles. By forging the signatures of non-existent Indiana law enforcement officers on the necessary certifications, the conspirators obtained car titles from Indiana stating that the salvage cars had been “rebuilt,” indicating the cars had been repaired and restored to operational condition. However, the “rebuilt” status of the cars was concealed on the titles by, among other means, placing an automobile auction sticker on the title before selling the cars to unsuspecting buyers at inflated prices. The buyers would then find themselves in possession of a vehicle with a value that was a fraction of the value-as-represented at the time of the sale.