Hidalgo Co. Officials Warn on Risks of Buying a Salvage Vehicle
WESLACO - Hidalgo County Vehicle Fraud Investigators are warning people about the risk of buying a salvage car.
Residents are getting rejected because the paperwork is not correct and they may not know they are driving away with a crime.
You can lose thousands of dollars and have your vehicle seized because of stolen parts.
Hidalgo County Vehicle Fraud Investigator Cesar Solis hears and witnesses similar incidents of fraud or tricked car buyers.
"People that come to us with the paper work in their hands and we ask them, where did you purchase their vehicles and they themselves tell us we purchased it at the flea market and this person gives us the name, their first name, no copies of their IDs, only a phone number and you call that number and they don't answer anymore", says Solis.
He explains investigators have to search through the entire vehicle to find any suspicious damage or stolen parts.
Solis says these cars can be found possibly online, at the flea market or car lots.
He says make sure to take a picture of the vehicle, ID of the seller and go to their office to get the right paperwork.
Cantu has one last recommendation for future car buyers.
"Make sure for the seller to sign his name saying that he's selling it to you and sign it in the back of that title.”
Cantu says this will leave a paper trail to help find the person who may have given you a stolen car.
Solis explains if investigators find out someone lied on an application it can lead to a third degree felony.
For the victim it can mean loss of money and the vehicle.