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S.C. Used-Car Dealership Charged with Fraud

January 17, 2005

ANDERSON, S.C. -- A used car dealership in Toccoa, S.C., is facing fraud charges after several customers were unable to obtain titles to their vehicles.

Rudeseal’s Used Cars, owned by James Rudeseal of Toccoa, sold several cars without having their titles, Toccoa Police Chief Jackie Whitmire told the Anderson Independent-Mail newspaper.

According to police reports, Rudeseal bought most of his cars at auctions and was selling them without paying the auction companies. The companies refused to release the title without a court order.

"Some of these people who bought cars have had them financed and had been making payments on them," said Whitmire to the Independent-Mail. "We have people coming by the police department or calling every day."

The car dealership closed about two weeks ago. Police said they believe Rudeseal left the state.

Eight people have filed complaints so far. Rudeseal faces one felony theft by deception charge for each case.

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