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West Ventura County Focus

OXNARD : Man Held in Scam at Auto Dealership

November 02, 1994|IRA E. STOLL

A man authorities said sold cars he did not own from a south Oxnard auto dealership was in jail Tuesday after being arrested on suspicion of grand theft.

Lawrence Federico, 62, of Ojai bought Sky Auto at 3610 S. Saviers Road in April, Department of Motor Vehicles investigator William Forestelle said.

Forestelle said Federico acted as a middleman, accepting cars from other dealers and private parties with the agreement to pay for the cars once he sold them. But Federico never paid for the vehicles and, in some cases, the people he sold them to never received titles for the cars, Forestelle said.

The DMV received numerous complaints from both ends of Federico's operation, Forestelle said.

Forestelle said he identified 10 cases in which Federico failed to pay for the cars he sold. He said the people now driving those cars would probably end up in court with the original owners of the vehicles.

"It's a big mess," Forestelle said.

Sky Auto closed in July. The DMV revoked its dealership license because Federico failed to register the change of ownership when he bought the dealership, Forestelle said.

Federico was arrested Monday night at the DMV office and held in lieu of $25,000 bail, authorities said.

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