Victor Barry and I had an interesting chat with a caller who had unwittingly purchased a stolen car. The “sting” was quite clever in that the seller gave all the appearances of being legitimate. It looked like he was buying the stolen car from his family home and the seller gave no impression of being desperate to make the sale. As is the way with these things the buyer was getting something that was “too good to be true”.
What could or should he have done differently? It all comes down to doing your due diligence and informing yourself about the car. So how do you find out if you are buying a stolen car or not?
It seems there is a small problem here in that the only person who can tell you whether a car has been stolen is a Garda. And they wont release that information to you because they would be breaching the Data Protection Act. The Draftsman didn’t either allow for this or forgot about it completely when he was drafting the Act. So basically it is up to the Oireactais to change the existing legislation so that we have third party access to the stolen vehicle information.
Buying stolen cars is not something you want to get involved with for obvious reasons.
Until then “stay wide”. If it looks too good to be true then be on your guard.
Shane Healy, Healy O’Connor Solicitors LLP Cork and Dublin