A $350,000 motorhome stolen in Louisiana was recovered at a Washington state RV dealership Monday (Aug. 30) after the owner became suspicious of two men attempting to sell the vehicle, according to a report in the Spokane Spokesman Review.
Ron Little, owner of RVs Northwest Inc., Green Acres, Wash., said the suspects were trying to sell the motorhome for $100,000 less than sticker price, contending that it was a 2004 model instead of a 2005.
Little called the Washington State Patrol, which set up an early-morning sting at the dealership and subsequently arrested the two men.
The paper reported that Little not only knew the suspected vehicle was a different model, but also knew that RV dealers across the country were talking about a stolen 2005 Newmar Mountain Aire motorhome. Little is actually friends with the owner of Dixie RV Superstores in Baton Rouge, La., where the RV was stolen.
In response to the story, management at La Mesa RV Center in San Diego issued a press release stating the incident was part of a much larger operation.
The release stated: “A well organized group of individuals appears to be in the business of stealing high dollar RVs. Once the vehicle has been stolen, the group is removing all visible VIN numbers from the coach and new plates are being created and installed on the coach.”
La Mesa said that the operation is also assuming the identities of the coach owners by “obtaining driver’s licenses and documentation to match” which are used to title the vehicle.
Dealers are cautioned to “cross check the engine serial number with the chassis VIN number and do so with each of the respective manufacturers of these products.”