The Civil Guard detains 40 people for the theft of 118 vehicles and their subsequent sale in dealerships
The stolen vehicles were marked by the criminal organization with GPS devices, so that in case of being recovered by the Security Forces and delivered to their legitimate owners, try to steal them again
Civil guards in charge of the investigation traveled to France to participate in the dismantling of the branch of the organization operating in that country, recovering there 61 of the vehicles stolen in Spain
From the sale of these vehicles they would have obtained more than 4,500,000 euros of benefits
The Civil Guard, within the framework of the "VOLTEDA-DUPLARE" operation, has broken up an international criminal organization dedicated to the illicit traffic of vehicles between Spain and several European countries.
40 people have been arrested, 8 of them in France, of Spanish, Romanian, Argentine and Bulgarian nationalities. All of them are considered responsible for the theft of 118 vehicles in our country, of which 61 have been recovered in France. With the sale of these vehicles, they would have obtained more than € 4,500,000 of benefits.
In the different registries practiced, several vehicles that were prepared for export abroad have been recovered, as well as tools used for counterfeiting, as well as forged foreign registrations and documents.
The investigation began at the beginning of last year, when the Civil Guard detected an ITV located in Madrid, in which several users of the same were using documentation of stolen vehicles in Germany, to pass favorably the technical inspection to vehicles that simulated coming from that country and thus be able to register them in Spain, when in fact they had been stolen in our country.
Subsequent investigations revealed that modus operandi had been used numerous times and in different places, but always by the same group of people.
Two ITV stations have been inspected in Madrid, where the organization passed inspections of previously stolen and counterfeit vehicles, as well as four mechanical workshops and three dealerships in Madrid and Toledo, in which stolen vehicles were sold with counterfeit items, simulating come from abroad
False crane assistance to steal vehicles
The thefts were perfectly planned and the brand and model and locations were chosen to carry them out, preferably residential areas and business areas of Madrid. They even carried out a follow-up and preliminary study of the routines of the owners of the chosen vehicles. In some cases, the criminals themselves installed, on the potential vehicles to be subtracted, GPS tracking devices to facilitate all the previous work.
As a novel circumstance, a branch of the organization had two roadside assistance cranes, with which the vehicles chosen to be stolen were parked to the places where they were parked, and simulating real assistance they were loaded onto them by transporting them to the municipality from Griñón (Madrid), where they were allowed to "cool" a few days to detect any external activity on them. Subsequently, they were transferred to a private estate in the municipality of Torrejón de Velasco (Madrid), where all its elements and security marks were falsified.
Another subtraction modality consisted of renting vehicles of the chosen brand and model, moving them to different European countries, where once the contracted delivery period had ended, they were not returned and registered in those countries with false documents, previously stolen from other vehicles of identical characteristics.
On other occasions they used a more conventional system, removing the door lock to access the interior and, with an electronic device that connects to the diagnostic port, they canceled the immobilizer and started it in a few seconds.
Folded vehicles in circulation
Finally, they changed the ownership of stolen vehicles to avoid any police or administrative action. To do this, they obtained information on vehicles of identical characteristics by requesting reports from the DGT, through an online agency in the province of Malaga, obtaining for less than € 10 that each report costs, all the data necessary to use them in the falsified documents.
In this way, after falsifying the license plate and the frame of the stolen vehicles with the legal data, two vehicles with the same identification and ownership data were circulating on our roads, which has motivated, in several cases, that the rightful owners received traffic complaints from provinces where they had not been.
Another way used by this organization to introduce stolen vehicles in Spain, was that once the racks, registration and documentation with vehicle data from Germany or Sweden were falsified, they mainly passed the ITV in Spain and, with this favorable report, they registered it administratively as coming from those countries, when in reality, they had never left Spain.
On the rest of the stolen vehicles, the organization acted in an inverse way, falsifying them with information on Spanish vehicles and sending them for sale to European countries, mainly to France, where almost half of the total stolen vehicles have been recovered.
For this reason, through the coordination of EUROPOL, a joint investigation was initiated with the Recherche Brigade de Gendarmerie de Rodez (France) and the OCLDI (Central Office for the Fight Against Itinerant Crime) of Gendarmerie de France, to clarify the plot criminal based in the Gallic country, which sold much of the Spanish vehicles.
Therefore, 4 components of the Civil Guard in charge of the investigation, moved to the neighboring country to collaborate in situ with the French police forces, where 8 members of this international organization were arrested and a large part of the vehicles stolen in Spain were identified .
Modes of sale; buyers in good faith
Once all these procedures were completed and with the vehicles "legalized", some of them were exposed in Spanish dealers, others in French sales and others through the Internet, all of them with a slightly lower sale price than the market, in order to attract potential customers and close your sale as soon as possible.
Dozens of Spanish owners would have bought vehicles at these dealers, not really knowing their illegal origin. However, and in anticipation that it was discovered that these vehicles were stolen and delivered to their rightful owners, this criminal group installed GPS devices on them, to steal them again in case the security forces recovered and So start the counterfeit cycle again.
This operation has been developed by the Organized Crime Section of the Automobile of the Central Operating Unit (UCO) of the Civil Guard and by the Traffic Sector of the Civil Guard of Madrid, with the police cooperation of different units of Gendarmerie of France and of the German Police, as well as the coordination of Europol.
For more information you can contact the Press Office of the Central Operating Unit (UCO), at 91 503 13 27.