The Ventura County Auto Theft Task Force (VENCATT) says a newlywed named Ryan Anthony Barba used fraudulent checks to buy a 2012 Mercedes in Laguna Niguel, a 2012 Lexus in Santa Barbara and was in escrow on two Santa Barbara County homes before he visited Paradise Chevrolet in Ventura June 4th.The general manager says Barba used a check to buy a 47 thousand dollar yellow Camaro made to look like the one in the Transformer Movie. Don Fromberg says he noticed the check was missing some numbers and secretly phoned the DMV.After tipping a Paradise car salesman with a bad check Fromberg says Barba told them he’d be back to buy his new stepson a Silverado pickup the next day.When he arrived undercover officers were waiting and took him into custody.CHP and VENCATT spokesman Steve Reid calls Barba a “smooth operator.”Reid says he was posing a former Marine and multi-millionaire who was dying of cancer.Reid says his new wife and her family apparently bought the story and allowed him to shower them with lavish gifts.But it turns out Barba was already married and on parole after serving time in Chino.The 31 year old is being held without bail in Ventura County Jail.His arraignment on grand theft, auto theft and other charges was postponed until June 19th.
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