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Car thefts: Ontario police arrested 34 people in Quebec

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The Ontario Provincial Police took stock of the operation it carried out in Montreal this week, in collaboration with the SPVM and the SQ.

  • Stéphane Bordeleau (View profile)Stéphane Bordeleau

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The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) arrested 34 people from the Montreal area in connection of a three-day operation in the metropolis carried out in collaboration with the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) to fight against car theft.

The Sûreté du Québec (SQ) and the Cornwall Police Service also collaborated in the operation. In all, 170 police officers took part in this operation, including around a hundred from the SPVM.

The police authorities presented the results of this operation Friday morning in Hawkesbury, Ontario.

All suspects arrested in the Montreal region since Wednesday are linked to auto thefts and various criminal offenses committed in Ontario from March 2019 to September 2023.

Dozens of Quebecers arrested in Ontario in connection with car theft over the past year

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This operation is part of an investigation by the PPO intelligence services called Project Volcano which has to date identified 83 Quebec residents involved in car thefts committed in Ontario

Over the past seven weeks, more than 3,000 private vehicles were stolen in Ontario.

A quote from Marty Kearns, Deputy Commissioner of Investigations and Organized Crime at the O.P.P.

At least 80% of these vehicles will head to the port of Montreal to be illegally exported abroad.

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L' Inspector David Shane, of the SPVM (left), participated in the OPP press conference on Friday.

The 34 people arrested this week in the Montreal area, four of whom are under the age of 18, had already been charged in Ontario, but had failed to appear in court or had not respected the conditions of liberation that had been imposed on them.

A dozen suspects wanted by the OPP were also already behind bars in Quebec prisons.

Several of these suspects also face serious charges of violating the Criminal Code, the Highway Code, the Cannabis Act as well as the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

In addition to car theft charges, there are offenses such as dangerous driving, hit and run , possession of a loaded firearm or possession of illegal drugs.

Some suspects were arrested driving stolen vehicles even though they didn't even have a driver's license yet.

Ontario police are still searching for 28 Quebec residents who are the subject of arrest warrants, according to the OPP.

One of the problems with vehicle theft is that thieves use computer means to hack the electronic chips in car keys. However, these keys are generally found inside houses, which forces thieves to approach very close to the residences and even sometimes to enter by force to steal the keys even when the owners are at home.

Car theft committed at gunpoint while the owner is behind the wheel called carjacking in English is also growing in Ontario. At least 68 cases have been reported in Toronto since the start of 2024.

Between 2021 and 2023, we saw an increase of 206 % of violent car thefts and home invasions related to car theft.

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Just like in Montreal, which serves as an export platform for vehicles stolen in the country In the east of the country, the Toronto and Ottawa regions are also areas very conducive to the theft of cars which are then transported to the port of Montreal, where they are exported around the world in containers by organized crime. .

More than 12,000 vehicles were stolen in Toronto last year, a theft of car every 40 minutes, according to data provided by the city's police department. The value of stolen vehicles exceeds $790 million.

  • Stéphane Bordeleau (Consult the profile)Stéphane BordeleauFollow
Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116