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I bought an HPI-checked car that turned out to be cloned. How can I get my money back?

I purchased a car in May 2010 from a private seller. I conducted various checks including HPI and all came back positive, matching the info the vendor supplied. After about three months the police recovered that car and informed me that the car was cloned. I tried to claim under the insurance of the HPI but was informed the that it did not cover cloned cars. Before recovery, I had taken the car to a Lexus main dealer for servicing. It wasn't noticed that the VIN had been altered and the fonts were different, as I was informed by the police. I have further been informed by the insurance company that I need to pay more money (£10000) to purchase the car, and that any previous money spent on it will not be reimbursed. What can I do? The police have now caught the vendor but said that the case is a big one and recovering my money is not guaranteed.

Asked on 11 September 2010 by wealthy

Answered by Honest John
HPI gives advice about avoiding clones. The DVLA is now in the process of replacing all 30,000,000 UK V5Cs because several million blanks were stolen and used for cloning. HPI via a third party does not guarantee its information - only a full HPI check through HPI itself is guaranteed.

If you e-mail all details separately to , giving your name, your address, and the reg and the VIN of the car (check the VIN on the V5 against the VIN on the car), I will take the matter up with HPI, but I don't hold much hope.
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