15 Indian-origin men arrested in Canada for running major cargo theft ring; property worth $9 million recovered – Times of India

TORONTO: Canadian police have arrested 15 Indian-origin men for allegedly running a major organised cargo theft ring, and property worth more than 9 million dollars was recovered along with stolen goods.
A joint task force was formed in March to investigate a series of tractor-trailer and cargo thefts in Peel regional municipality and across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), a press release by the Peels Regional Police said on Wednesday.
The investigation, dubbed Project Big Rig, disrupted the criminal ring, leading to the arrests of fifteen Indian-origin individuals from different cities in the GTA. Those arrested ranged in age from 22 to 45, and 73 charges were laid on them.
Investigators said the stolen cargo included various commercial goods, ATVs, and vehicles, which the suspects then allegedly sold at various flea markets and stores, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) reported.
A total value of 9.2 million Canadian dollars in property was recovered, comprising 6.9 million dollars of stolen cargo and 2.2 million dollars in value of stolen tractor-trailers, the press release said.
Officers discovered the same group of suspects had targeted cargos of various sizes and 28 tractor-trailers in six GTA locations by breaking through fences and driving away with the trucks or stealing trucks pulled over on the side of the road, Peel Regional Police Detective Mark Haywood said during a press conference.
“They were entering a lot of the facilities … [They would] cut the fence, go in, steal the product, steal a truck usually and drive over the fence,” Haywood was quoted as saying by the CBC.
“Some were taken from truck stops, and some were taken from roadside,” while the truck drivers were on breaks or sleeping, he said.
Several of those arrested were repeat offenders, said Nick Milinovich, the deputy chief of Peel police’s investigative and emergency services.
According to the press release, those arrested included Balkar Singh, 42; Ajay Ajay, 26; Manjeet Padda, 40; Jagjeevan Singh, 25; Amandeep Baidwan, 41, and Karamshand Singh, 58.
Jasvinder Atwal, 45; Lakhvir Singh, 45; Jagpal Singh, 34; Upkaran Sandhu, 31; Sukhvinder Singh, 44; Kulvir Bains, 39; Banishidar Lalsaran, 39; Shobit Verma, 23, Sukhninder Dhillon, 34, were also arrested and various charges were laid on them too.
Haywood said more arrests in cargo and auto thefts should be expected later this year.

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