A “sophisticated network of international thieves” drove off with dozens of luxury cars rented at city airports before flipping them for a profit in West Africa, authorities charged Wednesday.
Fourteen alleged schemers were charged with lifting the sweet rides — which include Porsches, Mercedes, and BMWs — from parking lots at LaGuardia, Kennedy and Newark airports after renting the cars with fake IDs.
Members of the ring took the stolen vehicles to a warehouse on Bruckner Blvd. in the Bronx, where brokers then forged paperwork to sell the ritzy rides to buyers in Sierra Leone, Guinea and the Ivory Coast, the state Attorney General’s office said.
“This was no fly-by-night operation,” said state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman — but his office and police were on to them.
The international thieves used fake IDs to rent cars from different car companies, including Hertz.
“For more than a year, investigators with my office and the NYPD tracked this crew using wiretaps and surveillance video," he said.
"We will never allow New York to be used as a hub for global theft."
Rental car companies victimized include Hertz, Avis and National, prosecutors say. Several private citizens also had their cars stolen from airport parking lots. The total value of the cars stolen was over $1.3 million, said Peri Alyse Kadanoff, deputy attorney general of the organized crime task force, at Wednesday's arraignment.
The crew's alleged members were hauled into Bronx Supreme Court, where they pleaded not guilty to several counts of criminal possession of stolen property.
They're speeding "fast and furious" — to jail.
Source- NY Daily News