|By Abby Simons, Star Tribune (Minneapolis)|
So when the
Four months later, charges say, the Lamborghini was towed under cover of darkness to a Top Gear garage, heavily damaged after it smashed into three trees and two light poles at a northeast
Juntunen's late-night joyride on
On Friday, both were charged in
According to the charges:
The morning after the crash, Juntunen filed an insurance claim with
Juntunen allegedly told the adjuster that Dupont, who was actually in the passenger seat, was driving the car from Top Gear's
In further interviews with
Travelers scheduled under-oath statements from both Juntunen and Dupont, but neither showed up, so Travelers denied the claim.
Charges say that during a meeting last month with Champlin, Juntunen admitted to taking the car without permission and driving it for non-business reasons. When asked why he would not go back to the insurance company and ask them to pay for the damage, Juntunen allegedly said, "If I ask them to pay based on the statements I gave, I'm going to prison. It's insurance fraud."
Champlin also admitted that Dupont wasn't driving.
Because Champlin only had storage insurance on the Lamborghini at the time of the accident, his insurance company denied the claim for damages. The car still hasn't been repaired.
According to the
No one's talking
Champlin declined Friday to discuss the charges, citing the active court case. He also declined to say whether he plans to sue Juntunen or Top Gear.
When contacted at the shop, a Top Gear employee said he had not heard of the charges. Dupont could not be reached.
Juntunen's criminal history includes convictions for third-degree criminal sexual conduct, third-degree burglary, motor vehicle theft and drunken driving. Charges say any vehicle he operates is required to be equipped with ignition interlock.
And that's not all. On
"What makes us different?" the Top Gear website reads. "In a word ... ethics."
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|Source:||McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|