54 Stolen Vehicles Seized In The Port Of Montreal

54 stolen vehicles were seized Tuesday morning (13/02/2024) in the Port of Montreal. The Vehicles had been stolen throughout the neighboring provinces of Quebec and Ontario. Many of these vehicles had very little mileage on the counter and were stashed in shipping containers waiting to be sailed overseas. Insurance companies in Quebec have been stating that it has hit new highs, being 1 billion dollars in theft payouts in 2023.

Drone view of the operation.

With the recent spike of grand theft auto on the east coast, most notably Quebec and Ontario, There’s no denying there’s a problem. Vehicles end up primarily over seas with shipments in Africa, the Middle East and Italy being seized. In fact, according to TVA personality, Mario Dumont, if you get caught for your first time stealing a vehicle in Quebec, the penalty is a fine. No prison time, but a fine. Which greatly under weighs the profit one would make depending on the make and model of the vehicle.

Police spent the day unloading sedans and SUVs out of shipping crates. In front of the authorities were 26 containers packed to the brim with vehicles. Some of those vehicles included 12 Ford F150’s, 8 Toyota RAV4’s, 5 Land Rovers and a Porsche. Due to vehicles thefts increasing throughout the years and showing no signs of slowing down, The SQ have decided to form a task force which specialized in vehicle thefts, most notably the thefts that are being shipped overseas.

While the SQ was investigating stolen vehicles throughout the province, this lead them to 2 major vehicle exporters that were based in the city of Montreal. Not having the chance to arrest the two suspects due to them leaving to Belgium and Morocco, the task force decided to tackle the suspected shipping crates used to export them overseas.

Most of these vehicles were recent models that can reach up to 100,000$ on the other end of the Atlantic ocean. An orange F-150 Raptor with barely 500km of mileage on the dash was also found. There was also a truck found which still had groceries in it. A lot of the vehicles seized had broken windows and rear view mirrors missing due to the vehicle being too wide to fit in the shipping containers.

Ford F-150 Raptor

The RCMP was also present, to take note of the modus operandi the thieves were using to secure these vehicles. There was also Ontario Provincial Police on scene, to check if there were any vehicles involved in more violent car-jackings. All these police forces being present is most likely due to the vehicle theft summit, held last week on February 8th in Ottawa.

Many of the border patrol agents in charge of the Port of Montreal haven’t finished their training exam that is required for the job. Some have even let it linger since 2021. The Canadian Border Services Agency have stated that during the span of 2016 to 2021, it has had a low completion rate of the training program. The minister of public security had announced last week that they would be investing 28 million to reinforce border patrol agents to intercept stolen vehicles.

Around 10,000 vehicles were stolen in 2022 in the province of Quebec, according to insurance companies. 1050 vehicles were reported to be found in the Port of Montreal as opposed to 57 in other Canadian ports. This number jumped in 2023 when it hit new heights with 90,000 thefts throughout the country in 2023.

Car thefts in the Quebec and Ontario provinces have more than doubled since 2015. Some, where the crime happened while the owner was behind the steering wheel, resulting in a much more violent type of crime. In 2022 at-least 9600 vehicles were stolen just in the city of Toronto. This isn’t just affecting Quebec and Ontario, but the problem has reached out to Atlantic Canada as well with the Maritimes reporting a 35% increase in auto thefts.

The vehicles seized are as follows; 12 Ford F-150s, 1 Ford F-250, 2 Genesis GV80s, 3 Lexus RX350s, 5 Land Rovers, 8 Toyota RAV4s, 1 Toyota Tacoma, 2 Honda CR-Vs, 1 Honda Passport, 5 Toyota CH-Rs, 3 Maxda CX-5s, 2 Toyota Highlanders, 1 GMC Yukon, 1 Kia Sportage, 1 Porsche, 1 Ram, 1 Lexus and 1 BMW X5.

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