A St. Petersburg man has been arrested on charges that he took cars on test drives from at least two local auto dealerships and refused to give them back.
Shahram Rouhani, 41, is facing charges of grand theft auto and scheme to defraud. Court records also list his name as Arron Rouhani.
Pinellas sheriff’s deputies say that on Feb. 15, Rouhani went to Fuccillo Nissan, 15232 U.S. 19 N, and picked out a 2019 Nissan Armada Platinum, which is valued at $56,000
Rouhani “made arrangements to take the vehicle on a test drive and return the next day,” arrest reports state, and to leave his current vehicle behind as trade. But another person came and drove that vehicle off the lot and Rouhani never came back with the vehicle he took for a test drive, deputies say.
On Feb. 24, Rouhani went to Crown Volvo and Landrover, 6001 34th St. S., and also arranged to take a vehicle home for the evening for a test drive -- in this case a 2019 Volvo S90 valued at $42,700..
Rouhani was found a short time later at a nearby BMW dealership trying to get another car. Deputies noted that he had driven the Volvo to that dealership and his personal license plate was on the vehicle.
“The defendant admitted post Miranda to going to multiple car dealerships and taking vehicles on test drives and not returning them for his own financial gain,” an arrest report states. He also admitted to letting other people drive the vehicles, reports state.
Deputies noted that based on Rouhani’s admissions, there is “at least one other vehicle out there not recovered,” reports state.
The Nissan that Rouhani stole, deputies noted, had a depreciation of $13,000 because it was damaged and now has to be sold as used.
Court records show that Rouhani was cited on Feb. 26 for driving with a suspended license. He has been charged with that offense three times in his past.
In addition, he has a driving record that includes 11 citations for speeding, five for careless driving, 11 for running red lights or stop signs, two for making an improper turn, four for not wearing a seat belt and once for driving a vehicle in an unsafe condition, driving without insurance and following too closely, court records show.
He also has been arrested on charges of aggravated battery, domestic battery, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of crack cocaine, disorderly conduct, petty theft, loitering, grand theft and possession of marijuana, court records show.
Rouhani was being held at the Pinellas County jail Monday on $35,000 bail.