U.S. officials have arrested 13 people for their alleged involvement in an organised crime gang stealing cars for transport to Iraq.
“Operation Hot Wheels,” a two-year investigation by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, resulted in nine Detroit and four in San Diego.
The vehicles were shipped to Iraq through Canada.
The group allegedly rented luxury cars and other vehicles from car rental chains in Michigan and Ohio. The vehicles were then driven into Canada, and police reports were filed claiming that the vehicles had been either carjacked or stolen in the Detroit area.
Five of the vehicles were intercepted on shipping containers in Montreal by the Canada Border Services Agency. Export documents accompanying the vehicles reportedly named the export agent as Discount Auto Sales, a Michigan company owned by one of the accused, Adnan Hana.
(Sources: UPI, LA Times)