Man scams Maine dealers out of at least seven cars in single week, police say

June 11th, 2014 by admin Leave a reply »

A convicted serial con man with a history of scamming car dealerships has been accused of perhaps his biggest scam yet: stealing at least seven vehicles from six dealerships in the Portland area in a single week.

Robert G. Steiner, 46, of Portland, known by police as “The Pretender,” was released two months ago from prison, where he served time for stealing three vehicles in 2001 from the Forest City Chevrolet dealership in Portland.

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Robert G. Steiner

One of twelve vehicle stolen by a scam artist from area dealerships in late May, a 2014 Ford Escape is back at Rowe Ford in Westbrook where it was stolen from. Carl D. Walsh/Staff Photographer

Robert G. Steiner, 2001 mug shot.

He was still on probation when police arrested him Thursday at Berlin City Nissan in South Portland on a charge of violating his probation.

Steiner is accused of using several fake names, fraudulent paperwork and elaborate stories to swindle car dealers who found him believable enough to sell him cars with no money down, on a promise that he would buy more cars.

At the time of his arrest, police in Portland, Scarborough, South Portland, Yarmouth, Westbrook and Saco were investigating complaints from dealerships that a man matching Steiner’s description had used aliases to persuade them to sell him new cars with no upfront cash or financing.

Portland police charged Steiner on Monday with two counts of felony theft and four felony counts of aggravated forgery, accusing him of stealing

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