ORLANDO, FL – Lojack announced at NADA several recent and significant stolen vehicle recoveries in the United States, Canada and Italy, including more than 60 stolen vehicles in January alone.
Police departments around the world utilized LoJack’s stolen vehicle recovery system to arrest at least 18 criminals, shut down several “chop shops” and identify one major car-trafficking ring in Montreal, Canada.
Palermo, Italy: Honda Motorcycles Recovered in Chop Shop
On January 16, 2013, the Provincial Police of Palermo was notified that a Honda SH scooter worth € 60.000 was stolen from the Piazzale Carmelo Lazarus. By tracking the scooter’s LoJack homing signals, two patrol cars tracked the scooter to a van parked right in the Piazza Carmelo Lazarus.
The patrolmen removed the steel padlock on the rear hatch and found the reported scooter, as well as 12 other Honda motorcycles with various engine sizes. Of these vehicles, two were intact, while the other 11 were in parts. The patrolmen did a quick search and learned each scooter was reported stolen sometime during January 2013 from various locations in the city of Palermo.
Brea, CA: Car Dealership Targeted by Thieves
On January 18, 2013, the Brea Police Department in Orange County, California was notified by a local car dealership that 13 cars had been stolen from their lot. Authorities suspect that the cars had been taken by thieves accessing the keys inside the dealership. By following the LoJack homing signals, police officers were able to locate six of the cars, which were found parked and scattered across local neighborhoods.
Among the retrieved cars were a Mercedes-Benz CL600, a Hyundai Genesis, a BMW 745, a Mercedes-Benz 5LK, and a Bentley. An additional vehicle was recovered by Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department officers after a triggered LoJack device prompted officers to stop a BMW M3.
Due to extensive follow-up work by OCATT Detectives, the lead detective indicated that so far four suspects have been arrested and charged as well as all 13 cars being recovered. The estimated value of the recovered cars is $250,000.
Montreal, Canada: Major Car-Trafficking Ring Thwarted
On January 21, 2013, police in Montreal, Quebec were notified of a vehicle theft ring targeting various Toyota models, and used the LoJack system to track several of these vehicles to the same location. When the tracked cars were found in a barn outside the city, police discovered that the barn was one of several sites used by a major car-trafficking operation, to store their stolen vehicles.
It is believed that criminals would bring stolen cars to the barn, place them into containers, and transport them to the Port of Montreal, where they would ultimately be shipped to Africa.
During the raids of this theft ring’s storage locations, police seized 30 vehicles, a large sum of cash, sizeable quantities of illegal drugs and other stolen assets, resulting in more than 14 arrests. Police expect that even more stolen goods and arrests will be made due to these recent raids.
Paterson, NJ: Stolen Vehicles Recovered and Chop Shop
On January 28, 2013, the owner of a 2006 Acura RSX contacted the Paterson Police Department to report that their vehicle was stolen from the driveway. The police verified the theft and entered the vehicle information into the state and federal crime computers, which automatically activated the LoJack transponder concealed in Acura.
An officer with the Union County Police Department picked up the silent LoJack homing signals from the stolen car on the Police Tracking Computer installed in the patrol vehicle. Following the directional and audible cues from the LoJack computer, the officer tracked the vehicle to a residential area of nearby Hillside.
The officer determined that the vehicle was parked in a garage in the rear yard of a house. In the driveway of the house, the office discovered a stolen 2004 Subaru Impreza. A search warrant was obtained for the garage where the 2006 Acura RSX was located along with the parts from four other stolen vehicles that had already been dismantled. The investigation is continuing and arrests are expected.
For a list of more recoveries involving the LoJack system, visit the LoJack Auto Theft Blog.