Phoenix man accused of defrauding used car dealers, private individual

Published: Tuesday, April 5, 2022 - 5:40pm
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A Phoenix man has been charged with fraud and theft after allegedly scheming used car dealerships and a private victim.

While employed at multiple used car dealerships around Phoenix, Eduardo Rodriguez is accused of pocketing cash payments on cars instead of turning them in to his employers. He also also accused of selling a vehicle privately in which he defaulted on the loan, and one of those dealers had to buy it back.

Ryan Harding of the Arizona Department of Transportation says it’s important buyers protect themselves when purchasing a used car. 

"People come in, they’re just looking to find a car," Harding said. "They think they find a good deal and they just want to pay for it and move on with their vehicle. And then it turns out that they’ve been frauded in some way."

Harding says buyers can be proactive in the car buying process.

“It's worth taking the time just to ask lots of questions, verify information," Harding said. "And then if you're getting a funny feeling, or they're acting suspicious in any way, it's worth your time just to walk away and go somewhere else.”

Harding says buyers should verify VIN numbers, the title, and any other vehicle documentation to ensure the transaction is legitimate.

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