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November 7, 2009

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Quick thieves steal from over 100 cars

THREE members of a gang that allegedly broke into more than 100 cars and stole property inside have been arrested, Qingpu District police said yesterday.

Police said the case is under further investigation because a number of victims haven't reported their losses to the police.

The gang has cruised several districts, including Qingpu, Jiading, Minhang and Pudong, to look for targets since June.

It took only three seconds for them to open a car door and grab the goods, police said.

According to the police, the gang members drove illegal taxis by day and drove the cars out late at night.

They usually targeted vehicles parked on remote streets or in parking lots of big shopping centers.

The parking lot of the Outlets shopping center in Qingpu District was one of their favorites.

In a surveillance tape, police saw a gang member jimmying the car door while another kept watch.

Beside them, a black taxi was waiting to pick them up. The whole theft took three seconds.

A suspect surnamed Hu told police that they usually targeted medium and high-level cars, such as Buicks, Mazdas and Hondas.

They got something on every try, according to police.

Police said some car owners treated their cars as a safe and left a number of valuables inside -- a big help to the gang.

In June, a victim parked his Mazda in the Outlets for nearly four hours, leaving two laptops, a pair of expensive sunglasses and business documents in the car.

The property, valued at nearly 30,000 yuan (US$4,392), was all stolen, police said.

Police urged drivers not leave their things unattended in their cars.


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