Georgia Couple's Dream Car Purchase in South Florida Turns into Financial Nightmare

Apr 2, 2024 1 min read
Georgia Couple's Dream Car Purchase in South Florida Turns into Financial Nightmare

It resulted in them reporting the dealership to the state.

A senior couple from Acworth, Georgia, is sounding the alarm over what they describe as a deceptive transaction with Dream Auto Collection, a South Florida car dealership. Jeanne Clark and Steve Hawes paid $15,000 for a rare, low-mileage 2003 Lexus LS, only to find themselves without a car and without responses to their refund requests.

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Clark and Hawes discovered the vehicle on Dream Auto Collection’s website and saw it as a perfect match for Clark's existing 2001 Lexus LS. According to Hawes, they interacted with a man named Sebastian Merfea, who promised that the car would be delivered to them once their check cleared. Not only did they not receive the car, but they later found out it had been registered to another buyer in Kennesaw, Georgia, just days after their check had been cashed.

In a twist to the tale, Merfea texted the couple claiming that the car had power steering issues needing a $5,000 repair, promising a different car in exchange. However, the person who actually received the Lexus confirmed to Local 10 News that the car had no such issues.

When Local 10 News visited Dream Auto Collection in Hollywood, Florida, co-owner Alex denied the couple's allegations, calling them "impossible." Interestingly, when confronted on the phone, Merfea was unable to explain the whereabouts of the vehicle. Alex promised to resolve the situation but failed to provide any further details.

The couple has since filed a police report and is considering additional steps, including contacting the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, which licenses and investigates dealerships.

Their unfortunate experience serves as a warning to prospective car buyers to thoroughly research dealerships and exercise due diligence before making any large financial commitments. In the meantime, Clark and Hawes are insisting on an immediate refund via cashier's check, hoping to close a chapter they describe as a 'nightmare.'

Source: Local 10

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