It's called the long arm of the law. Statute of limitations on most criminal, except murder, is 7 years. However, since these tickets are attached to your driving
record, it is the most well-kept record keeping the states and federal government have. And, it is up to your state laws how long these tickets stay on your record. My suggestion is to get them cleared up as quickly as possible by either working the system yourself to see what you can do or contact an attorney to help you clean them up. I promise you they will haunt you until you take care of them.
You will need to refute the one on the car you never owned. Check to see if there is someone who has the same name as you, check to see if the ticket, driver's license and social security number match, as well as the address. You will need to check with the clerk's office IMMEDIATELY to see if you can appear before a judge to give you extra time to straighten these matters up.
Depending on how serious the tickets are, most courts would rather you be on the streets, working to pay the tickets, etc., off, than to be in jail. If you have criminal charges, they may want to book you into jail, which is not a happy occasion. If they do want to book you into jail (check with your sheriff's department or the police department and ask them what they will do), be prepared with bond money and/or a bondsman. And for God sake, don't do it on a Friday in case they require you to appear at a Preliminary Hearing
or before a judge before you are released.
My son had a check that he didn't even write 6 years ago for $30. He has a serious disease that requires machines and meds 24 hours a day. They wanted to put him in jail on a Friday night with a $300 bond 100 miles from his home.The only reason they didn't was because he had so many medical problems and I know the attorneys in his town. We called and he checked in to the booking area, had his bond money, but it still took him 2 hours to get released. So be prepared.