By: Luke Jones, Published on June 9, 2017 10:00 AM, Last Update on June 9, 2017 07:02 AM
The Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is aiding Edmonton police in an investigation into an auto parts theft ring that has been operating in the city.
IBC says the operation has been based out of the northeastern part of Edmonton, and police claim it is the “largest operation of its kind.” Authorities in the city contacted the IBC to assist in identifying the vehicles, where they are located, and who owns them.
“Everybody in there was overwhelmed with what we had,” Det. Dwayne Karpo told Global News. “We’re talking guys who have been investigators for 30 years, dealing with auto theft, and even they were taken back. They’ve never seen anything like this.”
Police have raided the site and found it to be massive. Indeed, stolen parts are still being recovered from the area at 121 Avenue and 76 Street. So far, more than $2 million worth of parts have been recovered. “
Anything on your vehicle that could have been parted out, was being parted out here,” said Karpo. “The parts business is very lucrative. You think, you’re paying $1,000 for a door, tires, rims. There’s big money in it.”
Authorities say the operation was “very sophisticated”.
“Just the organization aspect of it, very methodical where parts were placed,” Karpo explained. “This is a great example of what can happen with a stolen vehicle. Some of them that we’ve identified were as recent as June 02. So June 02 stolen, brought here and it’s already in parts.”
“This is one of the largest search warrants related to auto crime, to my knowledge, in Edmonton’s history and possibly in Alberta’s history. It’s a huge file,” commented IBC Western Canada director of investigative services.
“There are many, many files here related to stolen autos. Most of those have been paid out, to my knowledge, so we’ll be doing what we can to get that product back to the insurance company.”