Dismantling of a luxury car fraud network: the Rolls-Royce convertible was declared as an ambulance

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A vast luxury vehicle trafficking network was dismantled in Île-de-France, leading to the arrest of four people. They are suspected of having imported the vehicles by registering them fraudulently.

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– A Rolls Royce stopped on the motorway was the starting point for the dismantling of a vast automobile fraud network.

It was an unexpected road check a little less than a year ago that changed everything. It was April 28, 2023 when the CRS of Pomponne, in Seine-et-Marne, stopped a latest generation Rolls-Royce convertible on the A4 motorway, says The Parisian. This “Phantom” model, highly sought after, is estimated at more than 450,000 euros. But several elements will trouble the police. First, the vehicle has black plates prohibited in France. On the other hand, he has already been the subject of administrative immobilization for suspicion of fraud. For what ? Because the Rolls-Royce was imported as a specially adapted self-propelled vehicle (SPV).

However, in normal times, this category of vehicle is reserved for ambulances, and, above all, this allows for total tax exemption. It is therefore from this car that the investigators will uncover a vast luxury car fraud network. Because they will look at the other vehicles belonging to the company in question, and all of them will present anomalies, indicates The Parisian. But the investigators will not be at the end of their surprises. A manager of another SME will come and claim ownership of the seized Rolls Royce with supporting documents. It will turn out that these are fakes and the investigation will determine that the two companies worked together.

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Between October 2020 and February 2024, around fifty luxury vehicles were registered fraudulently. THE cars were imported from several countries, from the United States, Germany or Japan, and registered under another category to avoid import taxes. Most of the time, they were declared as ambulances, when the thermal models were transformed into electric ones. Some were also declared new even though they were used. But to pull off such a ploy, you needed a man authorized to enter the vehicle registration service.

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This vast network then sold the vehicles by multiplying false resales via fictitious companies so that the final owner would not be worried in the event of an inspection. According to investigators, a man residing in Hauts-de-Seine was also in charge of renting them since several vehicles were fined for urban rodeos or at community weddings. The others were sold either for large sums of money in cash or through nominees. The Parisian tells for example that a farmer officially declared a McLaren 720S, a coupe sold for more than 250,000 euros. In total, four people were arrested on suspicion of belonging to the network, two of whom were placed in pre-trial detention. According to the Créteil public prosecutor's office, the criminal assets amount to 1.7 million euros.

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