Former Modesto Auto Dealer Arrested

California Department of Motor Vehicles
Media Relations Office
2415 First Avenue, MS F-122
Sacramento, CA 95818
Contact: DMV Public Affairs

September 28, 2010


Sacramento – Two former Modesto vehicle dealers and accomplices have been arrested on multiple felony charges of vehicle theft and securities fraud with losses that have reached nearly one million dollars.

Haythem Michael Attalla, 35, and his brother Amel Mohammed Ataalaha, 36, were arrested Friday, September 24, 2010, by the Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff's Department.. Both are being held in the local jail facility in Maricopa County on one-million dollar bonds and are awaiting extradition to California.

Attalla is charged with 65 felony counts which include grand theft, securities fraud and passing worthless checks, while his brother Ataalaha faces several charges of grand theft. It was also alleged by DMV investigators that the brothers acquired several vehicles through their former Modesto car dealerships (Car Mart and Crows Landing Auto Center) and then engaged in loan fraud. DMV received numerous complaints resulting in the cancellation of their dealer licenses in 2008.

Also arrested were Modesto residents Carlos Ramon Villano, 27, Nahrain Evans Youhana, 68, Jaime Toscano Pulido, 37, and Liduvina Villano Gonzalez, 43. Each face charges of grand theft and are being held in the Stanislaus County jail. A seventh suspect in this case is still at large.

The arrests culminate a two year multi-agency investigation that involved the Stanislaus County District Attorney's office, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), and the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department.

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