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Car clockers 'lost' a million miles.

Byline: Sophie Cross

THREE Birmingham men who admitted selling imported cars which had been clocked have been handed community orders.

Mohsun Ahmed, aged 55, of, Birch Close, Bourneville, pleaded guilty to 15 counts of engaging in a misleading commercial practice in providing false information about the cars' odometer readings at Birmingham Crown Court.

Mohammed Farooq, aged 34, of Wharfdale Road, Tyseley and Kamran Tabassum, aged 38, of St John's Road, Sparkhill admitted seven and eight counts of the same offence respect ively.

Trading standards officers from Birmingham City Council discovered Ahmed was selling the cars through his now defunct business, Japanese Cars Ltd, with vehicles being supplied by Farooq, trading as Link Motors, and Tabassum, trading as Car Point Birmingham Ltd.

Their investigations showed the total mileage discrepancy across the cars topped one million miles.

The three men said they had been unaware of the vehicles carrying false mileage readings and expressed deep remorse for not carrying out any mileage checks with the British Independent Motor Trade Association (BIMTA). According to BIMTA, one Toyota car that had been sold through auction in Japan with a mileage reading of 244,000 kilometres, had been seen on the forecourt of Japanese Cars Ltd with an odometer reading of only 125,053 kilometres.

The men were each ordered to undertake 250 hours' unpaid work within 12 months.

Passing sentence, His Honour Judge David Tomlinson said the trio's "selfish" actions had "demonstrated a disregard for the interest of customers" as well as "undercutting honest and diligent traders."

Birmingham City Council said it was aware there is a "major trade" in Birmingham in Japanese imported vehicles being offered for sale with false mileage readings.

After the sentencing, Councillor Neil Eustace, chair of the Public Protection Committee at Birmingham City Council, said customers buying second hand vehicles needed to be "very wary" as advances in technology had actually made criminals' ability to clock cars much easier.

He said: "If people are in any doubt about a car they wish to purchase, they should input the registration number into both the HPI mileage check website and the VOSA MOT history check website.

"Paying a small fee for these checks is better than being lumbered with a dud car."

CAPTION(S):

(from left) Mahammed Farooq, Mohsun Ahmed and Kamaram Tabassum were convicted of selling cars with false odometer readings.
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Jul 31, 2010
Words:391
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