Large Auto Theft Ring Busted
Police have dismantled an auto theft ring that was targeting ford trucks in Laredo.
The thieves were hitting parking lots and even trucks parked in driveways of homes.
nine arrests have been made and two are now pending.
Police say these men are responsible for numerous ford truck thefts in Laredo.
These thieves were so bold as to take them straight from your driveway or busy parking lots.
“Residential commercial from anywhere.”
The auto theft ring was busted after a two month investigation by Laredo PD.
“Our investigators worked long hours. It was an exhausting case.”
The operation was dubbed "Murcielago" or Operation Bat, for the way the thieves worked.
“mainly at night. they were looking for their targets at night.”
Police have tied the men to at least 28 stolen vehicles but believe there may be more.
This surveillance video from an apartment complex, shows how quickly trucks were stolen.
“one person got off the van opened the vehicle and then the other person for off the van and took off with it.”
Police say some of the suspects were working directly with cartels in Mexico.
“We've gotten more information that they use them for human smuggling or drugs.”
Further investigation will reveal if there are more men involved in this crime ring.
Police say their work isn't over yet.
“We know its not over. we know there's going to be other groups.”
“We just have to be ready.”
The men arrested face a total of 26 charges in connection with the thefts.
Police say there is something you can do to better protect your vehicle from thieves.
Like getting some type of anti-theft device or simply making sure to always lock your car or truck.