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Former New York Dealer Pleads Guilty to Fraud Charges

July 01, 2008

ALBANY, N.Y. — A New York woman with a history of used-car sales fraud will be sentenced to up to five years in prison for fraud and failed tax payments on vehicles bought and sold at a local car lot, reported the Times Union newspaper.

Kimberly Shaffer, 38, admitted to defrauding customers out of deposits and failing to pay sales tax on vehicles bought and sold at Frontline Motors, her former Nassau, N.Y. car lot. Shaffer appeared before Rensselaer County Court Judge Robert Jacon to plead guilty to third-degree grand larceny and first-degree scheme to defraud.

Shaffer was first charged in the case in October 2007, when she was arrested for taking deposits on vehicles from customers but selling the cars to other buyers and pocketing the down payments. She was also charged in April for failing to pay $47,000 in sales tax owed on vehicles bought and sold while running the dealership.

She will be sentenced Sept. 17 as a second felony offender to two to five years in prison but was allowed as part of the deal to enroll in a drug rehabilitation program run by the Department of Correctional Services. Shaffer was ordered to pay $53,475 in restitution to the state Tax Department and refunds to customers.

In a previous felony case, Shaffer and her husband were sentenced to six months in jail in Albany County in October 2001 for rolling back the mileage on odometers and posing as grieving family members desperate to sell an elderly relative's car at a bargain price.

In that case, the couple sold at least 131 cars with understated mileage and other defects, including doctored titles, from their two former homes in Delmar and Glenmont over a four-year period, according to state officials.

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