Durham auto technician sentenced for emissions fraud scheme

From staff reportsFebruary 20, 2013 

— A licensed North Carolina emissions inspector was sentenced to 5 years of probation and 6 months house arrest with a $500 fine after pleading guilty in a vehicle emissions fraud scheme in violation of the Clean Air Act.

Angel Dario Rodriguez Nunez, 30, of Durham, worked at two Durham auto care facilities, Express Auto Sales and Services and Car Care Express Auto Sales and Services.

Officials said 817 vehicles between May 2009 to July 2010 were falsely tested, 353 of them by Nunez. Each vehicle was given a fraudulent emissions pass for between $150 to $225 per vehicle.

The vehicle’s Vehicle Identification Number was scanned and tied to a surrogate vehicle’s emission readings, usually a vehicle between 1996 and 1999 which would not produce a VIN when connected to the facility computers.

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