Man arrested for odometer tampering

Feb 28, 2014 11:50 AM

DMV Investigators arrested Alberto Navarro Zapata, 27 in Stockton for odometer tampering, theft by false pretenses, and acting as an unlicensed car dealer.

Yesterday’s arrest was made following a seven month investigation that began after a victim bought a vehicle on Craigslist in the Fresno area. While at DMV registering the vehicle it was determined the mileage on the odometer was altered to be significantly lower than it actually was. The victim then identified Zapata in a photo lineup. The investigation found Zapata was purchasing Honda and Acura vehicles, lowering the vehicle’s odometer, altering the title, then reselling the vehicles on Craigslist across the Central Valley.

DMV Investigators found Zapata sold six vehicles with altered odometers adjusted by an average of 100,000 miles lower than the actual mileage. Craigslist records revealed Zapata posted approximately 98 vehicles on the site in a 19 month period. Investigators suspect there are other vehicles that Zapata has sold and rolled back the odometers.

A new study from automobile research firm Carfax shows California has the highest total of car showing evidence of odometer fraud. Nearly 300,000 cars now on the road in California are affected, according to the study. This trend is something every Californian looking to buy a used car should watch out for.


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