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Feds pursuing group charged with selling fake cars

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BRETT BARROUQUERE | November 23, 2012 11:06 AM EST | AP


LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Federal authorities are pursuing three fugitives and have arrested four other people in what they describe as a $1.4 million international fraud operation stretching from Kentucky to Europe and involving the sale of non-existent cars.

The criminal case, targeting seven people who used at least 20 aliases and five fictitious companies among them, involved advertising cars on websites such as eBay and Autotrader and arranging for wire transfers to pay for the vehicles. Once the money was received, prosecutors said, it was run through multiple bank accounts in Kentucky in different names and eventually overseas, but no car was ever produced for the buyer.

Four people have pleaded not guilty. Three others have been charged, but hadn't appeared in court in Lexington as of Friday.