WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) – A federal grand jury in Wichita has returned an indictment charging a 31-year-old man from Derby with 27 counts of criminal misconduct for tampering with cars odometers.

Court documents say Alex Newbrey allegedly bought used cars from Oklahoma and Kansas at an auction, rolled back the odometers, and then used fake documents to get titles from the Kansas Department of Revenue with the false mileage.

Newby was the owner and operator of three used car dealerships in Wichita, Ideal Motors, Midwest Wholesale, and Prestige Motors, all of which are now closed.

According to the Indictment Newbrey bought nine different cars at auctions, some with more than 300,000 miles on them, and then rolled back the odometers to show they had just over 100,000 miles on them.

The Better Business Bureau says you can take steps to protect yourself from falling victim to a scam like this. By doing research beforehand, you can know what the cars background is and have a better idea about what you’re possibly getting yourself into.

“Just with any industry there’s always going to be an outlier that is deceiving the public or taking advantage of consumers,” said the VP of Productions for the Better Business Bureau of Kansas Denise Groene.

Some people are scared to buy a used car because they don’t know it’s background and are worried they’ll get scammed but Groene says it’s perfectly safe. Not only are most dealerships honest and ethical but you can do multiple things to check a cars condition. And make sure that the information is correct.

“A lot of dealerships will have a Car Fax report you can look at. You can look at the title. You can also see if there’s any sort of history on maintenance reports as well,” Groene said.

She says if you’re worried the information the dealership gave you is wrong you can purchase the Car Fax yourself online and see if it matches. You can also take the car to a mechanic beforehand to have it checked over. If the odometer has been messed with their are signs like gaps in the number that a mechanic could see.

Groene says it’s always best to be safe but don’t let the fact that there are scammers out there stop you from looking into buying a used car.

“It’s important to keep in mind that the majority of auto dealers, in particular used car dealerships, are honest, ethical, and trustworthy,” she said.

Newbrey is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit odometer fraud, nine counts of odometer tampering, seven counts of mail fraud, nine counts of aggravated identity theft, and one count of wire fraud.

He is currently out on bond until his next hearing. The Kansas Department of Revenue, U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and Office of Odometer Fraud Investigation are investigating this case.