A Huddersfield man says he is being pursued for a £9,000 debt he does not owe – on a pick-up truck he did not buy.
Ben Rycroft, 59, of Paddock, said he was astounded to get a letter from finance company GMAC Ltd thanking him for taking out a credit agreement for a Nissan Navara Adventure 2.5-litre pick-up which he had supposedly bought from Arnold Clark Motorstore at Leeds Road.
Mr Rycroft, a manager at Kirklees College, said someone else had used his driving licence to arrange the purchase without his knowledge.
He said Arnold Clark had failed to follow its own procedures requiring the customer to provide not only their driving licence but two recent energy bills and their bank details as well as their signature.
But Arnold Clark said it was satisfied with the way the vehicle was sold and the finance agreement was arranged.
Mr Rycroft said: “I rang GMAC and spoke to a lady and told her I had not been to Arnold Clark and I never purchased a vehicle. She said she would investigate. Nine months down the line I got another letter saying I had missed some payments. I would have thought my first phone call would have set alarm bells ringing.”
Following further complaints, Mr Rycroft said he was sent a copy of the credit agreement – to find that although the driving licence details were his, other details given – the bank account, home telephone number and employment history were not.
The final straw came when the finance company sent someone to repossess the pick-up – a vehicle he has never owned or even seen.
Mr Rycroft said he had contacted the police, who had told him they could not help because it was a civil matter.
Mr Rycroft, who drives a Lexus Rx 400 estate car, said: “As far as I am concerned this is a matter between Arnold Clark and GMAC. Arnold Clark did not follow their policy when asking for credit details.”
Scott Willis, Arnold Clark group sales director, said its records confirmed that Mr Ben Rycroft purchased a motor vehicle – registration YH57 HTK – in June, 2016, from our Motorstore dealership in Huddersfield. Over one year later in July, 2017, Mr Rycroft raised a complaint which was duly investigated and a response was issued to Mr Rycroft on August 1, 2017.
Mr Willis said: “The letter explained that having investigated the complaint we were satisfied that all the documentation relating to the sale of the vehicle was in the name of Mr Ben Rycroft and had been signed accordingly. As such we were satisfied with the manner in which the vehicle was sold and the finance agreement was arranged.
“We would add that the sales executive who handled this particular sale no longer works for Arnold Clark and we also understand that Mr Rycroft had previously raised a complaint with the finance company, GMAC. Having investigated the matter we understand that they also are satisfied in respect of all the documentation relating to the finance agreement.
“The suggestion would appear to be that Mr Ben Rycroft may have been subject to fraudulent criminal activity. If Mr Rycroft is of the view that this is the case then we would reiterate, as per our letter, that we believe this would be a matter for Mr Rycroft to take up with the police.”