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York police make arrests in suspected GTA vehicle theft ring, seize $700K in cars, parts

Click to play video: 'Police in York Region say bust commuter lot car theft ring' Police in York Region say bust commuter lot car theft ring
Fri, Nov 17: York Regional Police charged three men and seized $700,000 in cars and parts in connection to a vehicle theft ring. As Catherine McDonald reports, the cars were being chopped up and sold in an industrial unit running as a legitimate business – Nov 17, 2017

York Regional Police have charged three men and seized $700,000 in cars and parts in connection to vehicle thefts from commuter parking lots across the Greater Toronto Area.

Police said their investigation began in August 2017 after receiving reports of vehicle thefts from commuter lots.

Investigators said the suspects targeted Honda, Acura and Toyota vehicles which had been parked for the majority of the day.

READ MORE: Ontario police bust luxury car theft ring that sold vehicles internationally

Larisa Grinberg had parked her car just like every other day at the Maple Go Station in June, but when she came back to drive home after work — it was gone.

“I was coming there, [but] I don’t see my car,” Grinberg told Global News. “I didn’t understand what happened, so I called my husband just in case he picked up the car but he said no.”
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Grinberg is one of 32 alleged victims identified so far in the string of thefts that police said they had been investigating for four months.

The investigation led police to an auto parts supply company in Toronto where it is alleged the stolen vehicles were dismantled and sold for parts.

Police also said some stolen vehicles had new vehicle identification numbers placed on them for resale.

It is believed some of the vehicles were also shipped overseas.

READ MORE: A look at car thefts in Canada

Police said one suspect was arrested on Nov. 14 after a search warrant was executed at the auto shop located at 175 Toryork Dr. in Toronto. On Nov. 16, two more suspects were arrested.

Police said the suspects would bring the cars in, chop them up and then put the parts out to sell, so a lot of companies who fix cars ended up buying stolen parts.

In total, police said they recovered parts from 32 stolen vehicles with an estimated value of around $700,000.

Go Transit and police said they are working together to improve surveillance cameras in these commuter lots.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the York Regional Police Auto/Cargo Theft Unit at 1-866-876-5423 or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.

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