Police say Utah businessmen took $ 888,000 from customers, never delivered a trailer
The owner of a former Utah County RV business and his son face multiple felony charges. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)
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SPRINGVILLE – Further criminal charges were filed Monday in connection with a former camper trailer company accused of stealing from customers over nearly $ 1 million.
Harrison Ashley Grimes, 26, of Vineyard, was indicted by the Utah Attorney General’s Office in 4th District Court for engaging in illegal activity and 11 counts of communications fraud , both second degree crimes.
Grimes is the son of Benjamin Ashley Grimes, who was charged in 2019 with selling a trailer he was supposed to fix for a customer and pocketing the insurance money. Grimes was also charged in July with engaging in illegal activity.
Grimes owned Moby1 Expedition Trailer in Springville, a company that made custom recreational trailers. The company closed in 2018 and filed for bankruptcy.
According to the prosecution documents, the Utah Consumer Protection Division has received 40 complaints from customers claiming to have made substantial down payments but never received their trailer or any refund. From April 2015 to December 2018, Moby1 raised more than $ 888,000 in deposits “for trailers that were never delivered to the customer,” the charges show.
By the time Moby1 closed its doors for good, the company “had not delivered a trailer or made a deposit refund to 39 of the plaintiffs”, according to the charges.
Harrison Grimes “worked under the direction and knowledge” of his father, according to the charges, and the two men “jointly engaged and supported each other in the commission of these offenses, including efforts to conceal from clients the existence of the ploy or artifice to defraud customers. “
Prosecutors say most trailers cost over $ 35,000 and in many cases over $ 40,000. The Grimes would require customers to pay 50% of the cost as a down payment, then offer “expedited” delivery for an additional fee, depending on the charges.
“In each case, the customer was never informed that there was a growing line of customers who had been given the same deadline for receiving a trailer but who had not received a trailer,” indicate the accusations.
In some cases, customers were shown pictures of a trailer that would have been built for them, “only to find out later that the trailer shown to them went to another customer or was never delivered without it. explanation of the co-accused “, according to the charges. .