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Identity thief who stole $400,000 worth of cars from SoCal dealerships sentenced to 11 years in prison

LONG BEACH, CA - SEPTEMBER 23: The blue Ford emblem is seen on a new trucks at a dealership on September 23, 2022 in Long Beach, California. Ford Motor Co. has reportedly delayed deliveries on some new vehicles due to a supply-chain shortage of the company's iconic blue badges. (Photo by Eric Thayer/Getty Images)
A thief used stolen identities to purchase vehicles in Los Angeles, Riverside, Orange and Ventura counties starting in November 2021. (Eric Thayer / Getty Images)

An Orange County man who was caught using multiple stolen identities to steal more than $400,000 worth of vehicles from car dealerships throughout Southern California was sentenced to 11 years in state prison, according to the California Attorney General's office.

Armed with multiple stolen identities, Jean Anthony Parret, 49, illegally opened lines of credit at multiple Southern California car dealerships, California Atty. Gen. Rob Bonta said in a news release. On Tuesday, Parret pleaded guilty to multiple counts of identity and vehicle theft, according to the release.

Parret used stolen identities to purchase vehicles in Los Angeles, Riverside, Orange and Ventura counties starting in November 2021. Using a stolen identity, he opened a line of credit to purchase a 2021 Ford Ranger at Cal Worthington Ford in Long Beach and a 2020 Ford Ranger at Kia Downtown Los Angeles, according to prosecutors. He did the same at a Nissan dealership in Garden Grove where he secured a 2021 Nissan Titan and another 2020 Ford Ranger at Raceway Ford Riverside, court records show.

Parret also used the personal information of another victim to get a 2022 Chevrolet Silverado from a dealership in Montebello and a 2021 Ford F-150 at a dealership in Long Beach, prosecutors said.

The California Department of Justice’s Special Prosecutions unit charged Parret in April with 20 counts, including grand theft, attempted grand theft and identity theft, with special allegations for taking property worth more than $100,000. He pleaded guilty to four counts in Orange County Superior Court on Tuesday for charges of identity theft and grand theft auto. Parret was convicted of robbery, identity theft and forgery in a separate case in December 2021, according to court records.

“We won't stand idly by when bad actors prey on businesses and innocent people to enrich themselves,” Bonta said in a statement.

"These are not victimless crimes," Orange County Dist. Atty. Todd Spitzer said in a statement. “Becoming the victim of identity theft can have profound consequences that can take years if not decades to overcome, including having credit histories ruined and losing the ability to qualify for employment opportunities and housing as a result of financial predators."

Prosecutors said Parret defrauded dealerships and financial lenders over a three-month period, and his victims include lenders and dealerships who lost hundreds of thousands of dollars, in addition to the people whose financial credit and history were stolen.

Parret is scheduled to appear in court in the first week of September to relinquish his firearms, according to the court calendar.

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.