Customs agents in Spain have intercepted a large volume of smuggled stolen cars including Dodges, Jeeps, and Fords from the United States during a recent crackdown. The vehicles are mostly high-end and share a common destination that may offer insight into recent thefts from U.S. car factories, according to authorities in Spain.
More stolen vehicles from the U.S. are making their way into Spain, law enforcement officials said, which prompted authorities to inspect more shipping containers. As a result of the crackdown, Guardia Civil says it and Spain's tax agency snagged 24 smuggled high-end vehicles from the U.S. in January at the port of Algeciras, near Gibraltar. It says it has confirmed with U.S. authorities that the vehicles were stolen stateside, and is in the process of returning them.
Guardia Civil didn't release the full dossier of vehicles it seized, though it shared a handful of images giving a general idea of what thieves are targeting. One photo clearly shows a Jeep Wagoneer, another a low-trim Dodge Challenger (either a GT or R/T), and the last depicts a modified Ford F-150 crew cab 4x4 of uncertain type. The 24 vehicles' combined value was said to total approximately $2.16 million, an average of $90,000 per vehicle.
All the intercepted vehicles were reportedly bound for the Africa, across the Strait of Gibraltar. Quantifying the number of stolen cars exported to Africa from the U.S. is difficult, but law enforcement in America, Europe, and Africa have recovered hundreds of stolen vehicles bound for West Africa, according to researchers.
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