Officers from the Guardia Civil have arrested six people believed to have been involved in a gang who would target vehicles on highways and motorways, who would damage vehicles in order to pretend to offer assistance whilst then robbing their unsuspecting victims.
The investigators believe that this gang alone are responsible for 450 thefts and robberies committed mainly on the AP-7 motorway, as well as other routes across Valencia, Catalonia, Aragon, the Basque Country, Castille y Leon and Madrid.
The detainees, who are of Serbian, Romanian, Kosovar and Spanish nationality, are charged with the crimes of robbery, theft, forgery, dangerous driving, money laundering and being members of a criminal organization.
During the search of five properties in the province of Tarragona, in the towns of Montroig del Camp and Hospitalet de L’Innfat, the officers seized cash, perfumes, mobile phones, tablets, computers, handbags, watches, knives, glasses, clothing and numerous documents relevant to the investigation, as well as five vehicles.
The investigation revolved around the knowledge of several thefts and robberies committed in the service areas of the AP-7 in the province of Castellon. The gang would puncture a tyre on a target vehicles, which would then continue on its journey, followed by the gang members. As the innocent driver of the target vehicle pulled over to examine the vehicle, the gang would stop with the target vehicle and offer assistance, whilst distracting the driver and other vehicle occupants to allow a second gang member to snatch bags and goods from their target vehicle, before making off in such a short time that the victim was confused by the situation for long enough to enable their escape.
In addition to the Guardia Civil, the operation also involved officers from the Judicial and USECIC Police. The detainees have been made available to the courts in Vinaròs, Castellón.