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Publish Date: 8/17/2005

City car dealer arrested, accused of bank fraud
Victoria A.F. Camron


LONGMONT — A Longmont car dealer accused of not paying a bank for vehicles after he sold them was arrested Tuesday morning on suspicion of fraud, police said.

Michael Irwin, 56, is accused of defrauding Heritage Bank of more than $106,000, said Longmont Police Cmdr. Craig Earhart. Irwin borrowed money from the bank under a “floor-plan loan” to purchase vehicles for his now-closed business, Irwin Automotive Group, and the bank held titles to the cars as collateral, Earhart said.

When Irwin sold the cars, though, he did not repay the bank, Earhart said. Because the bank did not receive the money, it has not released the titles, he said.

Longmont police began the investigation Aug. 1 after customers contacted the Colorado Department of Revenue because they had not received the titles to their vehicles, Earhart said.

Irwin was arrested on 14 counts of defrauding a secured creditor and one count of theft of more than $15,000, Earhart said.

He was in custody Tuesday evening at the Boulder County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bail. He is scheduled to appear in court today.

A call to Irwin’s home seeking comment was not answered.

Irwin filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in federal court July 27, according to court records.

Irwin is listed as the sole owner of Irwin Automotive Group, which was at 1935 N. Main St. The company incorporated in May 2002 but the state declared it delinquent Aug. 1 for failing to file an annual report, according to the Colorado Secretary of State Web site.

Victoria Camron can be reached at 303-684-5226, or by e-mail at vcamron@times-call.com.

 
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