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Catherine Brown

Oct. 24, 2014


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Word Count: 195

Man fools car dealer with fake check

OLEAN (Oct. 24, 2014) Police were searching today for a


tall, well-dressed man who took 16 vehicles from an East State
Street dealer with a worthless check for half a million dollars.
Wednesday, a handsome, tanned man posing as Paul
Battala, 54, Erie, Pennsylvania, told a Coppola Bros. Dodge
saleswoman he had inherited $60 million and needed vehicles
for his business, said police.
An executive called the number on the check, supposedly
from Erie National Bank, to verify funds, police said.
Trucks picked up 15 2015 Dodge Grand Caravans, valued
at $30,940 each. Battala drove off in a purple 2002 Plymouth
Prowler worth $42,000, said police.

Today the $506,100 check bounced. Police confirmed it as


fake.
Police recovered four

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minivans in the parking lot


between Carmike Cinemas and BJs Wholesale Club off West
State Street and 10 in the Cattaraugus County Office Building
parking lot at 1 Leo Moss Drive, said police.
Everybody kind of believed this guy. He would walk
through the lot and the sales person would say, That vehicle is
$30,000. Hed say Okay. There was no haggling over price,
said Sgt. Roberta Brown.
Police planned to charge Battala with felony fraud and
theft, said police.

Tweet: #OleanNY Police were searching today for a man who


fooled a car dealership with a fake, half-million-dollar check.
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