GALVESTON , TX (CNN) – Watch a scammer drive a million-dollar car into a lagoon.
He initially said a pelican caused the crash, but as Jeanne Moos shows us, the pelican is off the hook and the fancy car’s owner could be off to prison.
Did you see that? That is a Bugatti.
Since this ultra expensive supercar is rarely seen, it’s no wonder a guy riding near Galveston five years ago pulled out his camera when he saw one.
But he probably doesn’t want this one, not after what happens on his video.
The Bugatti slammed into a saltwater marsh, driven by a dealer of high end cars named Andy House.
House first told police he dropped his cellphone, reached for it, and upon sitting back up was distracted by a low flying pelican, which he tried to avoid by jerking the wheel.
But that excuse was for the birds. Because this week, Assistant United States Attorney Chris Tortorice said, “Andy House pled guilty to one count of wire fraud.”
Tortorice says House bought the Bugatti for a million dollars, took out a car collectors insurance policy worth $2.2 million, and intentionally totaled the car.
House didn’t turn off the engine so saltwater would ruin it.
The Bugatti has a 1,001 horsepower engine and the motor alone is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.
House’s excuse for not turning it off?
“Well, he said the mosquitoes were really bad. But they’re not so bad you need to bail out of car like it’s on fire,” Tortorice said.
Tortorice called the :24 videotape of the crash the cornerstone of his case. It shows there was no pelican to avoid and no brake lights.
What are the chances of having a video of this happening?
“If there were a Mount Rushmore of bad luck I think Andy House’s face would be on it,” Tortorice said.
Though there’s a 20 year maximum for wire fraud, a more likely sentence is a year or two.
There was vindication for one much maligned character, one poster noted “finally after all these years that poor innocent pelican is off the hook.”
Even the tow truck guy bows to the Bugatti, washing his hands in the marsh before daring to touch the wheel of a car that costs a fortune.