Texas Man Accused of Stealing Cars During Test Drives

April 15, 2013

A South Texas man is facing multiple charges after authorities say he stole vehicles from four McAllen auto dealerships under the guise of taking them for test drives.

Juan Lara, of Weslaco, is charged with two counts of aggravated robbery and two counts of auto theft. The 41-year-old was arrested Wednesday by McAllen police and federal marshals. He’s held on $600,000 bond.

Authorities tell The Monitor of McAllen the series of thefts began in January when Lara took off with a car while a salesperson was inside a store paying for some gasoline during the test drive. In two later incidents, police say salespeople told them he pulled a gun on them and drove off with Ford F-150 pickups.

Police say other people may be involved in the scheme.

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