Replacing the instrument cluster with a new or used one is an easy change. Criminal? Only if you can prove intent. I would bet the actual dealership with the car did not do this- they make too much money from regular cars to risk this kind of crap.
But the VIN change- that is very criminal.
I am guessing the original car with this VIN was wrecked- and not claimed on the insurance (for some reason- maybe no insurance- maybe they were drunk and had a single car accident- maybe it was wrecked on track). The wrecked vehicle without a branded title was sold for parts- and this car had the wrecked car's instrument cluster and VIN plates installed.
I would check on the history of that VIN. If you can find out the original owner- and how long the VIN was not registered- that should be very informative.