In order to buy high-end cars through renting they use front men or people with false documentation and in many cases they do not pay even the first installment. The thieves disappear the first month with the vehicle and prepare it to sell it with false documentation at an attractive price. In this way, 100,000 euro cars that barely have kilometers can be sold at half the price.
According to the latest Interior crime report, Alicante registered 1,022 vehicle thefts last year and is the sixth province with the most robberies, behind Madrid (6,348), Barcelona (5,132), Seville (1,490), Malaga (1,322) and Valencia (1,301). Throughout the country, 26,008 vehicle thefts were reported and the province with the fewest cases was Soria, where three cars were stolen.
In the set of crimes that are registered In the province of Alicante, vehicle theft only represents 1.5 percent. A very low figure that also includes many complaints that are clarified and are withdrawn days after being presented because the cars appear, according to the experience of the National Police.
Despite the low percentage of thefts compared to the mobile vehicle fleet, the Police are aware of the priority in the fight against illicit vehicle traffic and the Alicante Provincial Police Station has tripled the staff of the Organized Crime group of the Judicial Police Brigade that persecutes these thieves. The Alicante group is one of the few specialized in illicit trafficking in Spain of vehicles, along with Madrid, Malaga and Algeciras. It is made up of nine policemen and last year they recovered more than a hundred stolen vehicles and arrested a similar number of people linked to these thefts and other crimes such as drug trafficking.
For Interpol, illicit vehicle traffic affects all regions of the world and has clear links to organized crime and terrorism. Stealing a vehicle is “a low-risk method of profit for criminals.”
The black market for spare parts is another of the criminal modalities that the Police fights. There are groups that buy cars decommissioned due to claims and install parts for them of cars stolen for commercialization. The theft of SUVs to transport drug caches is also frequent, although more so in the south of the peninsula.
Romania, Bulgaria and Ukraine are three of the eastern countries where a good part of the stolen vehicles in Spain end up, although Italy is also a destination. The North African market is also chosen by the gangs that are dedicated to this criminal modality and stolen vehicles throughout Europe pass through Spain to that continent, although the border blockade by the covid has temporarily closed this possibility.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.