Slinfold fraudster jailed for online car sales scam

James Fyfe. Photo courtesy of Sussex Police
James Fyfe. Photo courtesy of Sussex Police

A con man who posed as a luxury car salesman has been jailed for fraud, police say.

James Fyfe, 26, of Stane Street, Slinfold, pleaded guilty to fraud and was jailed for five years.

He had advertised a Porsche 911 GT3 RS for sale on the website Piston Heads and a woman in Thailand agreed to pay a deposit of £88,000 for three cars. However the cars never arrived and the woman reported it to police.

Sussex Police say he also offered a Ferrari for sale for £85,000, took a £31,000 deposit for a left hand drive vehicle, and ‘sold’ a set of personalised number plates via social media for £22,000 and another for £10,500.

“Fyfe was already convicted in 2014 for other fraud offences for selling non-existent goods on eBay and was further charged with seven breaches of his serious crime prevention order and an offence of money laundering,” said a statement from Sussex Police.

“Fyfe appeared at Chichester Crown Court on 9 June and was sentenced to four years imprisonment for frauds totalling £231,000. He also received 12 months each for the six breaches of a serious crime prevention order to be served concurrently alongside the main sentence.

“He also activated a one-year suspended sentence given to him in May 2015 for previous fraud offences. In total he was sentenced to five years imprisonment.”

Detective Constable Sara Liau said: “Fyfe claimed he ran a company called Prestige Lifestyle, which boasts an impressive Facebook page, and people would contact him about his cars and he would offer to sell them high-end often limited edition cars.

“He duped everyone he was involved with that he was leading a lavish lifestyle. However it was all a lie, nothing Fyfe posted online was real.

“Fyfe has committed all the offences under the guise of his bogus company called Prestige Lifestyle Supercars, registering it and producing merchandise to give the impression of it being legitimate.

“He used social media to promote the company and spent the money he got from committing fraud to live a luxurious lifestyle hiring luxury supercars, buying high value designer clothes and treating friends and family to meals out and hotel stays. All this continued the impression of him being a successful businessman.

“He also appeared in an article in the Daily Mail in December 2015, pretending to be the owner of a Lambourgini that crashed and used it to promote his fake company.”

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