Attorney general: 9 men plead guilty for roles in Bronx car theft ring

The thefts started in April 2020 during the height of the pandemic and continued until this past October.

Brittany Cadet and

News 12 Staff

Mar 12, 2024, 12:16 AM

Updated 41 days ago

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Attorney General Letita James announced guilty pleas and the sentencing of nine people for their roles in a Bronx car theft ring and the criminal possession of 45 cars during a six-month period.
The thefts started in April 2020 during the height of the pandemic and continued until this past October. The crew was able to capture dozens of cars throughout a six-month period and were reselling them all across the United States and the Dominican Republic.
Officials say a total of nine people pleaded guilty in this case that the NYPD named "Operation Master Key." The crew on the ground consisted of four members who were responsible for locating, stealing, altering and reselling stolen cars throughout the five boroughs and Westchester County.
Crew members would reprogram vehicles computers to disable alarms to then gain access to the cars, change license plates to cover the real vin number, use forged federal certification stickers on the cars and remove the original registration stickers, giving the cars new identities.
Most of the cars stolen were around the areas of the 49th and 50th precincts. All nine people who were involved were found guilty - some will be serving five years of probation, while others are facing one to three years behind bars, including a payment of $40,000 of restitution.
The attorney general's office says it worked in conjunction with the Organized Crime Task Force and the NYPD's Auto Crime Division.
The attorney general said “these individuals took advantage of New Yorkers who stayed at home in the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic to steal some of their most valuable assets.”


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