June 3, 2014 1:54 pm

Charges laid after flood-damaged vehicle hits the auction block

CALGARY- A Calgary man is now facing numerous charges, thanks to a sharp-eyed police officer who spotted a cloned vehicle.

Last month, the off-duty officer who has an interest in collector cars was at a vehicle auction, when he recognized a 1962 Chevrolet Impala convertible. He remembered one was written off by its owner, after being damaged by the flood in High River.

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It’s alleged that the car was bought from a salvage company, and the VIN was changed to hide the vehicle’s damage history. A bill of sale and out of province inspection were also produced to register the vehicle.

As the result of an investigation, 63-year-old Youssef Yangui has been charged with uttering a forged document, tampering with a vehicle identification number and fraudulent concealment.

Police warn that vehicles damaged in a flood are extremely unsafe, and cannot be repaired. That’s because the electrical components are compromised, including braking, acceleration and steering systems.

Potential buyers are encouraged to check the VIN to see if the vehicle is listed as stolen.

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