Motor Dealer Caught Winding Back Odometers
Source: Office of Fair Trading Media Release - May 2017
A Gold Coast man was ordered to pay $3,657 in fines and disqualified from being a motor dealer for 10 years by the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) yesterday (30 May 2017).
Ivan Kaplun was investigated by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) for making false and misleading representations about car mileage.
The tribunal heard Mr Kaplun, who had been a licensed motor dealer since 2010, bought three cars at auction, wound back the odometers by a total of 327,574km and on-sold three cars to unsuspecting consumers.
Mr Kaplun also failed to advise potential buyers he was a licensed motor dealer, or give a statutory warranty or written contract of sale to the buyers.
The Tribunal heard Mr Kaplun was obstructive throughout the investigation, claiming to have lost documentation and refusing to admit responsibility for his illegal actions.
In sentencing, the tribunal considered Mr Kaplun’s clear intent to make a profit at the expense of the affected consumers, and his disregard for their safety in driving vehicles significantly older than they were led to believe.
Fair Trading Executive Director Brian Bauer was pleased with the tribunal’s decision and said motor dealers who misrepresent car mileage had no place in the industry.
“Purchasing a vehicle with a tampered odometer is a major safety concern, as the further a vehicle travels, the more prone it is to safety defects,” Mr Bauer said.
“Unexpected maintenance issues could arise, and consumers may find themselves out of pocket a lot more than they anticipated.
“Consumers should complete the appropriate checks before purchasing a vehicle, like doing a Personal Properties Securities Register (PPSR) search and checking the results against those provided by the seller.”