Andrea Torres, Local10.com, February 16, 2023
HIALEAH, Fla. – The arrests continue after Miami-Dade detectives reported uncovering criminal activity out of the D Brother Body Shop, a small business near the Miami Amtrak Station in Hialeah.
The cases stem from an inspection on Oct. 14, when police officers reported finding seven stolen vehicles and vehicle components at the shop at 3723 NW 80 St.
Dayron Leon first registered the business on November 2015 out of Medley, according to state records. Police officers arrested him on Wednesday at the Miami-Dade Police Department-Northside District Station.
Leon, 38, who appeared in Miami-Dade County court on Thursday, was also the owner of D Auto Corp., a neighboring business, at 3725 NW 80 St., that detectives believe was involved in the fraud.
Ariel Fernandez, a mechanic who worked as a manager at the body shop, was with a defense attorney when he surrendered on Wednesday at the station, after detectives learned that he had been driving a black Nissan Murano with a shady past, according to the arrest report.
Detectives believe Fernandez “knew or should have known” about the scam — which involved a fraudulent paper trail — to cover up the “dismantling of stolen vehicles,” according to the arrest report.
Copart, an online auto auction, had sold a 2020 Nissan Murano for $4,900 because it had been involved in a crash that had damaged engine components and the right front door, according to the police report.
Leon’s D Auto Corp., which he incorporated in 2021, purchased the 2020 Nissan and had records of about $6,187 spent to buy parts from Palmetto57 Nissan, a car dealer in Miami Gardens, to repair it, according to police.
Leon allegedly provided records claiming that Fernandez, 48, had purchased the 2020 Nissan from D Auto Corp. for $5,000, according to police.
When detectives uncovered that Fernandez’s Nissan had a counterfeit Vehicle Identification Number, or VIN, they learned the car was actually a 2019 Nissan Murano that had been stolen on Feb. 23, 2022, in Miami, according to the arrest report.
Detectives had already arrested Dayer Leon, 29, earlier this month for operating a chop shop. Prosecutors filed the case on Feb. 10 charging him with six counts of second-degree grand theft, third-degree grand theft, six counts of possession of counterfeit VIN decals, six counts of defaced or altered vehicle identification marks, two counts of airbag possession on a stolen vehicle and two counts of failing to maintain salvaged records on an airbag dealer.
Records show Dayron Leon remained at the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center on Thursday afternoon and has two pending cases.
In one case, Dayron Leon is facing charges of grand theft, three counts of possession of counterfeit VIN decals, three counts of defaced or altered vehicle identification marks, unlawful bill of sale, and uttering forged instruments.
In another case, Dayron Leon is facing charges of operating a chop shop, six counts of second-degree grand theft, third-degree grand theft of a vehicle, six counts of possession of a counterfeit VIN decal, six counts of altered vehicle identification marks, two counts of airbag possession on a stolen vehicle, and two counts of failing to maintain salvaged records on an airbag dealer.