Washington County man pleads 'no contest' to failing to deliver on $400K in car work
A Washington County man pleaded no contest Tuesday to bilking hundreds of thousands of dollars from customers who turned to him for restoration work on their classic cars, according to the Allegheny County District Attorney's Office.
Curtis Ukasik, 44, of Finleyville pleaded no contest to 19 counts of theft and one count of deceptive business practices, court records show. He owned Redline Performance Motorsports, which operated out of garages in Warrendale, Corapolis, Zelienople and Harmony.
Ukasik was charged in April 2016 for allegedly taking customers' money and feeding them excuses for months when the work never materialized.
Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge Randal Todd set a sentencing date of Dec. 18. The DA's office said it will seek restitution of more than $400,000.
According to the criminal complaint, Ukasik took customers' money and then made excuses for months about why they had not received their restored cars.
In one instance, Ukasik told a customer that a rebuild of his 1949 Ford would take six months. Four years and more than $170,000 later, Ukasik still had not provided a completed car, according to the complaint.
The alleged victim said Ukasik repeatedly made excuses for the continued delay, including “the body shop guy was slow, the upholstery guy was not available, and ... employees were not showing up,” according to the complaint.
In another instance, a woman from Beaver County gave Ukasik the hot rod body of a 1932 Ford Deuce worth $10,000 to sell on consignment, according to the complaint. Ukasik gave the car body away to a customer in place of money he owed the customer. When the woman asked, he said he'd sold the car body for $11,000.