Most of the stolen vehicles were intercepted in Italy on their way to Turkey and Libya.
Vehicle theft has been on the rise during the COVID-19 pandemic, but this isn't just a U.S. trend. In a scene right out of Gone In 60 Seconds, police in Italy found shipping containers filled with a total of 30 stolen vehicles (mostly performance and luxury vehicles). These vehicles had been stolen from Canada, and Canadian police found another 10 cars in the process of being shipped overseas. All 40 cars that were seized by police had been stolen from the Greater Toronto Area, and they were being shipped to destinations in Turkey and Libya.
According to a press release issued by the York Regional Police, this discovery came after the Canada Border Services Agency flagged a suspicious export of a 2018 Audi Q7 back in April. This vehicle had also been on the radar of the YRP as part of an auto finance fraud investigation that led to a search warrant being executed at RS Royal Services, a Canadian business that was incorporated in November 2019.
The search uncovered these 40 vehicles including a BMW M6 convertible, Mercedes-AMG GLC Coupe and a Chevy Camaro, and all of the stolen vehicles are worth an estimated $1.8 million Canadian – about $1.3 million USD. The vehicles were seized at two Italian ports (in Salerno and Tauro), and all of the vehicles are being returned to their lawful owners, which at this point is probably the insurance companies that paid out stolen vehicle claims to the original owners.
In addition to these 40 vehicles, Italian news source Ansa.it is reporting that more than 100 vehicles were intercepted from an airport in Gioia Tauro that were in the process of being sent to Libya.