As of yet, 14 Defenders, seized in the past 2 months by the DHS on the grounds of fake registration documents and that the vehicles were supposedly imported after the year 2000, and therefore didn’t comply with new regulations, have been safely returned to their delighted owners.
But, the most inspirational factor at play here is that a Lawyer, named the ‘Defender of Defender’s’, William Hedrick, got involved and offered to represent the ex-Land Rover owners free of charge.
We know that the DHS had been working with a list of offending VIN numbers, based on the last six digits of each one, to identify the once thought illegal Landy’s. However, it was found that vehicle manufacturers, by practise, recycle VIN numbers and the real clue is in the prefix code of each number.
Based on that fact, the VIN numbers were decoded and it was revealed that errors had been made. The vehicles were found to be 1983 to ’84 110’s. Not the post-2000 models that they were once thought to be.
The first Land Rover to be removed from its baffled owner was a 1983 110, belonging to Danny Harrington, Upstate NY. The officials believed it was a post-2000 year, vintage, model. It was taken only a few weeks after Danny had replaced the clutch, himself, during a 10-hour marathon.
“All the dude ever wanted was his hunk of junk truck back!’”
16 days after losing his pride and joy, the loveable Landy was returned by the same tow truck.
“I am seriously astonished. I just hope everyone else can get their trucks back too.”
(Harrington, upon the rightful return of his 110)