Seven million mile clocking fraud uncovered
Individuals responsible for car clocking offences amounting to more than seven million miles during a six-year period have been successfully prosecuted.
John Murphy, 67, from Conwy; Paul Arslanian, 38, from Conwy; Christopher Graham Lunt, 39, of Long Lane, Chester; Trevor Gareth Jones, 58, from Colwyn Bay, and Simon Richard Williams, 49, Fluin Lane, in Frodsham have all been found guilty of conspiracy to commit fraud at Chester Crown Court.
It follows a three-year trading standards investigation by Warrington Borough Council and Halton Borough Council.
The defendants, who work for PCS Events Ltd a Runcorn-based chauffeur services company, were found guilty of operating a widespread system of clocking the cars in their possession.
Warrington and Halton trading standards began investigating in 2013 after receiving information of alleged fraud and consumer protection offences, relating to the turning back of mileages on vehicles obtained by the company.
The defendants sought to profit from the offence as vehicles which were subsequently sold had their sale prices inflated based upon the incorrect mileage reading.
It was found that more than 100 vehicles had been clocked, with evidence of clocked vehicles dating from 2008 to 2014. The minimum amount of clocking which is believed to have taken place is 7.5 million miles.
Automotive data experts, hpi played a significant role in the investigation.
Commenting on the case outcome, Barry Shorto, head of industry relations at cap hpi, said: ‘There is a clear message to clockers – it’s only a matter of time before they are caught and brought to justice. This operation forms part of hpi’s commitment to its campaign against clocking, as well as raising awareness of the value of its National Mileage Register.’
The hpi Check includes a mileage check against the National Mileage Register as standard, now with over 200 million mileage readings.
Sentencing is scheduled for 17 March 2017 at Liverpool Crown Court.