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  • Once Stolen, Once Found: This 1965 Volkswagen Transporter Bus To Be Auctioned for Charity

Once Stolen, Once Found: This 1965 Volkswagen Transporter Bus To Be Auctioned for Charity

Scott Evans
Dec 15, 2009
Last month, we brought you the story of a long-lost 1965 Volkswagen Transporter bus that was discovered in pristine condition in a shipping crate 35 years after it had been stolen. The Allstate insurance company, which legally owns the bus now, announced today it will auction it and donate the proceeds to charity.
Photo 2/9   |   Stolen 1965 Volkswagen Transporter Bus Front View
"Typically, if we do recover a stolen vehicle, it's in worse shape than before it was stolen and it's worth less - sometimes far less - than the amount we paid to our customer to settle their claim," said Paul Huber, Allstate's director of claims in the company's northwest region. "The situation with this bus is so unique that we thought it required a unique approach."
On July 12, 1974, the then-nine-year-old bus was stolen from a Washington state resident and wouldn't be recovered for three-and-a-half decades. Allstate paid the owner $2500 to settle the claim after the vehicle couldn't be recovered and, as is standard procedure, the title was transferred to Allstate. The bus turned up in a shipping container destined for the Netherlands after having been professionally restored in Arizona. An investigation by U.S. Customs, the California Highway Patrol and the National Insurance Crime Bureau found that the vehicle had been owned by several people in several states over the past 35 years, but that Allstate still had legal claim to the title.
Photo 3/9   |   Stolen 1965 Volkswagen Transporter Bus Rear Three Quarter View
With so much legal confusion around the ownership and fate of the bus, Allstate decided that the best decision was to auction it and donate the proceeds to Lydia Place, a non-profit organization in Washington state that helps homeless women and children who are victims of domestic violence. The auction will take place this Friday, December 18, online through virtual auction house Copart. The auction is open to the public and anyone interested in bidding can do so through Copart's website. Bidders can even enter a maximum bid ahead of time and Copart will automatically bid them up to that limit, or they can wait until the live virtual auction begins at noon Pacific Standard Time and bid live.
Photo 4/9   |   Stolen 1965 Volkswagen Transporter Bus Engine
"Allstate has a long and proud history of supporting domestic violence survivors," said Michelle Lee, field vice president of Allstate's northwest region. "It's our hope that the tremendous public interest in this unique vehicle and its unique history will translate into a significant contribution to Lydia Place."
Photo 5/9   |   Stolen 1965 Volkswagen Transporter Bus Side View
Source: Allstate

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