Archive for May, 2014

Law Enforcement Raid Busts 17 People Involved In High End Auto Theft

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

A combined raid conducted by the California Highway Patrol and LAPD busted a group of 17 people involved in a high ticket grand theft auto of at least 21 cars from 18 car dealers in fraudulent schemes. The group was thoroughly investigated by the Department of Insurance and Franchise Tax board individuals for the falsified financial information they used to steal these cars.

The suspects, allegedly stole cars from 18 different car dealers, then sold the cars or staged auto accidents with the stolen vehicles. Accident claims were then submitted to numerous insurance companies in order to collect the money for the value of the damage shown in their claims. Some of the claims even included personal injury records.

Initially, 12 people were arrested when the investigation started four years ago. The number rose to 17 suspects in total as the investigation carried on and raids were made by law enforcement agencies. The total sum presented in the claims amounted to almost $3 million. However, it is not yet a confirmed figure and authorities say that there can be more to this story as the investigation continues.

These types of thefts are normally termed as “false pretenses” under the U.S. legal terms, and under false financial pretenses, a buyer approached the dealer with false financial information. By the time dealer realizes the information is false, the stolen vehicle and the buyer are both long gone. The parties involved then stage a car crash and file the insurance claim. The police have dubbed this investigation “Operation High End” since the cars stolen were high end make and models.

The LAPD is still investigating this case and waiting to see if more suspect and cars come out of the woodwork.