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Car dealer jailed for removing 2.75m miles from previously owned cars

By Tom Gibson | June 12, 2023

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Buyers have been advised to make precautionary checks ‘no matter who you buy a used car from’.

Car dealer jailed for removing 2.75m miles from previously owned cars

A car dealer will spend the next five years in jail after wiping 2.75m miles from 33 previously owned vehicles that were sold on to garages.

27 year-old Ashley Wilson was convicted of fraud and gaining over £445,000 from the sale of the cars after an investigation by Hampshire County Council trading standards officers.

"Ashley Wilson was convicted on charges relating to reducing displayed mileages on 32 vehicles, commonly known as 'car clocking', totalling 2,750,000 miles," a spokesman for the local authority said.

"He was also found to have falsified car service histories to hide the significant reduction in mileage.

"In total 33 vehicles were fraudulently sold to legitimate car dealers across the country through several online dealer trading platforms.

"The defendant sold the cars for a combined total of £445,957.80."

Councillor Russell Oppenheimer, the council's cabinet member with responsibility for trading standards, said: "This is a great result for consumers who have been protected by Hampshire Trading Standards from the illegal activities of an individual who contrived to sell on second-hand cars dishonestly through legitimate traders.

"Car clocking is a serious criminal activity that can affect anyone who buys a used vehicle in the second-hand market, and result in people paying more than the market price as well as risking further unexpected repair costs because the car has more miles on the clock than advertised.

"Our advice is to always make a few precautionary checks, no matter who you buy a used car from, to reduce the chances of buying a vehicle that's being sold illegally, or under false pretences.”

Precautionary checks include looking for wear and tear in comparison to the mileage. For example, do the pedal rubbers, steering wheel or gear knob look newer than the rest of the car?

You can also check a vehicle’s MOT history here to make sure the mileage readings are consistent, or conduct a more thorough HPI check.

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