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As teenagers, we all entertain the idea of replacing our high school beater with a real car. Alas, for many of us, we are left waiting a few years until we have the disposable income to replace the rusty Pontiac Sunfire we learned to drive on with something more impressive. Maybe a hot hatchback or perhaps a gently used, entry level luxury sedan. A pair of 19 year olds in Santa Rosa, CA, though, just couldn't wait to pick up their very own "cool" car, so they did what any idiotic teenager would do – they swiped a credit card and rented a McLaren MP4-12C.

The two teens, Mohannad Halaweh and Nhimia Kahsay, were arrested by Sonoma County Sheriffs after the car, which was allegedly rented for $13,000 using a stolen credit card, was reported stolen. The two also charged $27,000 to rent a $12 million vacation home, according to The San Francisco Chronicle.

It's not entirely clear how the two teens were able to fool the unnamed rental car agency into releasing the car to them.

Ironically, the arrest happened when Halaweh was leaving a court appearance for (surprise, surprise) credit card fraud, from an earlier incident in which he tried to use an illegally obtained card to purchase $10,000 from the Apple Store. Halaweh and Kahsay are now sitting in Sonoma County Jail, with bail set at $100,000 and $60,000, respectively, and are facing charges of credit card fraud and possession of stolen property.

UPDATE: An official statement from Sia Bani, the president of Club Sportiva, the company that rented out the McLaren MP4-12C, has been released and is available below.
Show full PR text
Club Sportiva helps Santa Rosa police catch credit card thieves

As many of you have read online, a repeat identity thief was recently caught in California with stolen credit cards in a McLaren MP4-12C. This was indeed one of Club Sportiva's vehicles. Club Sportiva filed a police report with the San Jose police department once discovering further issues with the claimed identity of the driver, and that led to the prompt arrest of both driver and passenger of the vehicle in Sonoma County.

Club Sportiva's policy includes an age restriction to >25 years of age, with exceptions only made to entry level vehicles with an in-person interview with management, and a greater deposit, and only with a clear insurance background check.

Our delivery team was provided fake identification and flags were only raised after further due diligence with the credit card company used for the "gifted" experience. It is unfortunate that this fraud happened with one of our vehicles, but the two suspects were arrested on the evening of June 4th and we're happy to see neither the teens or the McLaren MP4-12C were hurt or damaged. Our thanks go to the San Jose & Santa Rosa police departments and the Sonoma County Sheriff's department for their assistance and quick action.

-Sia Bani, President, Club Sportiva

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