Local10.com, Chris Gothner, April 6, 2023
HIALEAH, Fla. – A Hialeah used car dealership owner already accused of leaving a 73-year-old woman in “financial ruin” by fraudulently using her identity is facing more legal trouble after police arrested him again Wednesday.
Christopher Landy Mora, 24, the owner of Realeza Motors, was first arrested on March 16 on charges of organized scheme to defraud, using identification without consent, first-degree grand theft, scheme to defraud a financial institution and filing a false motor vehicle insurance application.
In that case, he was charged alongside an alleged co-conspirator, Damian Iglesia-Martinez, 26.
Following Wednesday’s arrest, Mora faced an additional seven first-degree grand theft charges and new charges of organized scheme to defraud, defrauding a financial institution and possessing, selling, or offering fraudulent vehicle titles.
Neither Iglesia-Martinez nor any other co-defendants were listed on Mora’s latest arrest report.
According to Wednesday’s arrest report, a vehicle consigner went to Hialeah police headquarters, located right across the street from Realeza Motors, on March 28 to report that six out of the seven vehicles they had on consignment with the dealership had either fraudulent title changes or were nowhere to be found.
Police said the latest instances of fraud, which took place from 2019 to 2022, totaled $137,733.
Police said the other vehicle was still carried on a lien to the consigner but was fraudulently transferred to someone else.
According to the report, on Tuesday, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles suspended state licenses for both Realeza Motors, located at 5612 E. Eighth Ave., and Mora himself for “illegal and prohibited activity.”
As of Thursday afternoon, Mora was being held in the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center on a $17,500 bond.
Following his March arrest, Mora’s attorney, Edward Tapanes, told Local 10 News that he looks forward to working with prosecutors “in demonstrating that Mr. Mora was also a victim of Damian Iglesia-Martinez and others involved.”
Tapanes said Thursday that he had not been able to discuss the latest case with Mora, but noted that he surrendered to authorities when asked Wednesday.
He said the latest case involves allegations that are currently being litigated in a civil lawsuit.