Coast dealer caught lying about age of vehicles
THE Office of Fair Trading has issued a stark warning about a Gold Coast motor dealer who was fined for lying about the age of vehicles he was selling.
Robina's Samuel John Moses has been ordered to pay $5000 in fines after he pleaded guilty to an array of charges in Southport Magistrates Court, including making false representations about the manufacture date of eight used vehicles.
Mr Moses also failed to provide contracts of sale to two customers and to keep a transaction register, according to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT).
"In sentencing, Magistrate Pamela Dowse said the defendant's actions were despicable and she was disgusted he had taken advantage of people who could least afford it," the OFT stated.
Mr Moses was investigated after OFT received a complaint from the Gold Coast City Council, which "found he was selling used motor vehicles from a residential address".
The investigation found Mr Moses was licensed as a motor dealer, but he was conducting transactions privately to try and dodge consumer protection provisions," the OFT stated.
"As part of this deception he had not been using his own name on advertisements, instead using aliases and names of family members."
The OFT said a Mermaid Beach resident bought a Mazda 3 from Mr Moses late last year, was told that the timing belt had been replaced one year earlier and that the car was a 2005 model.
However, the $2000 car was inspected by a mechanic, who found the Mazda 3 was actually a 2000 model and the timing belt had never been replaced.
The investigation also found between September-December last year Mr Moses listed eight vehicles for sale online where the advertised year was between four and seven years younger than the actual year of manufacture, the OFT stated.
A conviction was not recorded in court.
OFT executive Director Brian Bauer said: "Consumers need to know the truth about the age of the cars they purchase because the ongoing safety of the vehicle is tied to its servicing and parts replacement schedules."
"If a car is due for a major service and the new owner is not aware of this, the vehicle may break down and cause a dangerous situation, for example breaking down on a freeway or on a little used rural road." he said.
"We recommend consumers who are buying motor vehicles privately conduct a number of checks before they agree to purchase a car."
Vehicle buyers can visit the Department of Transport and Main Roads' website to check a registration number or VIN. Consumers can also contact RACQ for pre-purchase checks.
Originally published as Coast dealer caught lying about age of vehicles