A lengthy investigation is coming to a close, as five people have been arrested for their work behind a major international theft ring. It all started last October when a Lexus dealer based in Santa Monica, Calif. notified police that a 2008 Lexus LS460 was fraudulently purchased from his dealership. Fortunately for the dealership, LoJack Corporation’s Stolen Vehicle Recovery System was pre-installed in the Lexus. After being informed of the fraudulent activity, detectives with the Task Force for Regional Auto Theft Prevention (TRAP) automatically activated the silent, hidden LoJack Unit installed in the Lexus. Three hours later, detectives were led to the Port of Los Angeles, where they located a cargo shipment containing the stolen Lexus and a stolen 2008 Corvette.
After further investigation, TRAP detectives recovered another container with two more stolen vehicles. They also determined that two additional containers – suspected of storing several stolen vehicles – already had left the country. Authorities with TRAP and the Foreign Export and Recovery Unit (FEAR) were able to recall the internationally-bound containers and they were subsequently returned to the Port of Los Angeles. The recall of the cargo shipments led to authorities recovering four more high-end vehicles (a 2008 BMW, two 2008 Mercedes-Benz cars and a 2008 Corvette) worth approximately $400,000.
The TRAP and FEAR detective’s investigation resulted in the recovery of eight vehicles and five arrests to date with several additional warrants pending. The investigation also disbanded a theft ring that was responsible for the theft of 67 high-end vehicles worth approximately $4.5 million and roughly 300 vehicles stolen throughout the U.S. over the last three years.