The latest scam, according to USA Today, is to cover up the fact that a vehicle is stolen by changing its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to a legitimate one that is registered someplace else. The article describes a couple in Warsaw, Indiana (just an hour away from Mishawaka, home of the Hummer), who found out their shiny new Hummer had actually been stolen in Canada and disguised with a phony VIN.
The vehicle had been stolen from a Quebec airport, and was eventually purchased at an auto auction by a dealer. The dealer then sold it to a local couple. The pair now has to deal with the fact that their $47K truck is stolen merchandise. The theft was confirmed when National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) investigators ripped off door panels and broke the windshield to expose well-hidden VINs that showed the vehicle’s true origin.