TORONTO, July 11, 2012 /CNW/ – Roberto Iraheta and Roberto Towing & Auto Services Inc. pleaded guilty Tuesday in Toronto Provincial Offences Court to two counts each of acting as a dealer without benefit of registration (curbsiding), contrary to the Motor Vehicle Dealers Act (MVDA) and two counts each of engaging in unfair business practices by making false, misleading or deceptive statements, contrary to the Consumer Protection Act (CPA).
In Ontario, all dealers and salespersons must be registered with the Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council (OMVIC). Unregistered companies, or individuals who sell motor vehicles as a matter of business, are considered curbsiders, and are breaking the law. Iraheta was fined $15,000, and the company $13,000, for curbsiding.
Iraheta was also fined $24,000 and the company $12,000, for making false, misleading or deceptive statements about the history of the vehicles sold. This included a false statement about the accident history of a vehicle and a false statement about the distance a vehicle had travelled.
Iraheta and Roberto Towing & Auto Services Inc. were charged by OMVIC, regulator of motor vehicle sales in Ontario, in 2010, after OMVIC investigators received information vehicles were being sold from 15 Elrose Avenue in Toronto. OMVIC’s investigation found approximately 31 vehicles had been sold, some of which were rebuilt insurance write-offs.
The total fines in this case including 25% Victim Fine Surcharges (VFS) were $80,000. Iraheta and Roberto Towing and Auto Services Inc. were given one year to pay. Iraheta was also given two years probation which included an order that he “not trade in motor vehicles without benefit of registration under the Motor Vehicle Dealers Act”.
Curbsiding is a growing problem in Ontario. In this instance the curbsiding took place at a business, however curbsiders often pose as private sellers to avoid detection and today’s online marketplaces make it easier for curbsiders to list and sell vehicles with anonymity. These illegal sellers often misrepresent themselves and the vehicles they trade which are frequently accident damaged (or previous write-offs), odometer tampered or they have liens.
To learn more about curbsiders and how to spot them consumers may visit buywithconfidence.ca.
To report a suspected curbsider: 1-888-NO-CURBS (662-8727) or firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: Canada Newswire / OMVIC