The Gatineau Police Service is charging two men who it believes tried to purchase several luxury vehicles using stolen identities.
Officers started their investigation back in May, after getting word from a member of the public that a man had contacted various car dealerships in the Gatineau area, to see if he could be approved for financing very expensive vehicles. Police were told the funding requests were made over the phone, using stolen identities.
Once the funding was granted, an accomplice of the first suspect went to the garage to sign the documents for the acquisition of the vehicle. Police say the second suspect then presented false identity documents, corresponding to the name used to make the financing request.
Investigators say the man would then leave the dealership in the new vehicle, with a temporary registration certificate, or "transit," which he handed to the suspect who placed the call. By falsifying the transaction certificate, suspect one was able to resell the vehicle to a third party and register it.
The two suspects allegedly resold 15 vehicles using their scheme -- a list of fraudulent transactions totalling more than $1-million.
Gatineau police were able to recover all but one of the vehicles, however, the investigation is still underway.
Georges Hui Ming Ling, 53, of Ottawa, and Bahjat Al-Koutsi, 28, of Gatineau, were both arrested on Wednesday afternoon. Both appeared in Quebec court, Thursday, facing a total of 56 fraud-related charges.