North East car dealer fined for selling car he didn’t own
- Car dealer based in Blaydon fined and told to pay compensation to customer
- Sold car which was subject to outstanding loan
- Failed to carry out checks to see if it could be legally sold
- Trading Standards prosecuted Jamie Bryant
Gateshead County Council website reported on their website in May that a used car dealer was fined having sold a car he didn’t own to an unsuspecting member of the public.
Jamie Bryant of Trade Cars NE Ltd (now a dissolved business and no longer trading) sold a BMW 1 Series having failed to run checks on the vehicle that actually had an outstanding loan against it. The customer only found out about this when a debt collecting agency turned up at his door several months later giving him the ultimatum of paying £2000 on the spot or returning his car.
The article on Gateshead County Councils website reported that “the buyer contacted Gateshead Council Trading Standards for help. Trading Standards Officers quickly discovered that the car which Bryant had sold – and on which he had failed to carry out the necessary legal checks – had an outstanding log book loan against it”.
Log book loans are financial loans secured against the value of a vehicle. Taking out a log book loan means that legally the company or person making the loan has legal title to the vehicle until the loan is paid back. The lender will place a marker on the HPI system to identify that the loan is in place and a car dealer can easily check this before selling a car.
The article went on to report that “Trading Standards Officers immediately contacted Bryant to try to resolve the matter but he took no action. The car was then taken away by the debt collection agency, leaving the buyer out of pocket and without a car. Bryant later liquidated his company, but Gateshead Council prosecuted him under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading regulations for his negligence as a director.
It was then reported that Bryant failed to attend the first court hearing in February 2019 and a warrant was issued for his arrest. On April 29, Bryant pleaded guilty at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court and was fined £600, and was instructed to pay the buyer compensation of £1,500 and costs of £273.
What this story clearly demonstrates is 2 things. You MUST research closely who you are buying from to avoid situations like this and always get a HPI check when buying a vehicle (most dealerships or even finance companies may do this on your behalf).
Here at Carbuco we can complete both of the above services through our “Dealer Check Report” which can be purchased for only £9.99, a small price to pay and excellent value as we do the work for you. For more information click here.