68 arrested in connection with vehicle thefts

A police investigation into car thefts in the Schengen area has resulted in 68 arrests and the seizure of 214 vehicles, mostly high-end models.

The operation, codenamed ‘Plafón’, lasted eight months and involved investigating 949 used vehicles reported as stolen in Germany, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, France, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Czech Republic, Romania and Sweden.

The vehicles were brought to Spain where they were sold at below market price. The detainees have been charged variously with fraud, misappropriation and handling stolen goods.

The operation covered fifty provinces in Spain with over 700 people being questioned.

An unusual aspect of the investigation was that the detainees did not belong to any criminal network or organisation but were operating independently.

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