17.8 C
Monday, October 2, 2023
HomeCanadaCBC news reports Justice Minister Lametti's two government cars stolen in recent...

CBC news reports Justice Minister Lametti’s two government cars stolen in recent years.


Thieves steal a vehicle every six minutes on average in Canada – and even the Attorney General is not immune.

A report was published on Thursday warning of a rise in car thefts in this country, just as Breaking: learned that two government-owned cars delivered to Attorney General David Lametti were stolen.

According to a Canadian government document, Lametti’s government-owned Toyota Highlander XLE was stolen on February 11, 2021 and has never been recovered.

Almost exactly two years later, on February 13, 2023, another Toyota Highlander XLE assigned to Lametti was stolen. It was recovered the same month; the mileage was 15,000 miles when it was found, but the document doesn’t say what the mileage was when it was stolen.

The Attorney General has been driving Ford Expeditions ever since, the document says.

In a new report, the Canadian Finance and Leasing Association (CFLA) says Toronto alone has seen a 300 percent increase in car thefts since 2015. The group estimates that car thefts cost the country about $1 billion annually.

The report says that once these vehicles are stolen, they are chopped up for parts or given new vehicle identification numbers and resold, sometimes abroad.

The CFLA says that while it is difficult to track down stolen vehicles, the potential for large profits and the “relative ease of removing vehicles from the country” indicate that unrecovered vehicles are usually shipped abroad or resold with counterfeit identification numbers.

The CFLA suggests that organized crime is a major culprit in vehicle thefts that are never recovered because organized crime tends to send stolen vehicles overseas. Thirty years ago, the association said, 90 percent of Ontario vehicles stolen were recovered; that percentage has since fallen to 50 percent.

“Vehicles stolen for non-profit purposes, such as joyriding or transportation for use in other crimes, are usually recovered by police,” the report says.

“Exporting is another story. Those vehicles will probably disappear forever.”

In 2010, the federal government introduced the Car Theft and Property Crime Approach Act. It created a separate felony for theft of a motor vehicle with a mandatory prison sentence of six years on third and subsequent convictions.

It also created an offense for altering, destroying or removing a vehicle identification number and authorized the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to hold suspected stolen property before it can be exported from the country.

Stolen vehicles sent abroad are often shipped in containers on cargo ships, the report said. The shipper must declare to the CBSA what is in the container; sometimes thieves say they ship cars and sometimes they don’t.

Those who transport stolen vehicles often claim that the containers contain something else that matches the weight of the vehicle, such as washing machines.

Border officials can identify stolen vehicles by comparing the vehicle identification number to the one on the declaration form. But given the sheer number of containers on transport ships, the report says, CBSA officials can only examine a small number of them and must instead rely on “intelligence, experience and expertise to identify containers for inspection that have come to suspicion.” .

The report calls for a more coordinated national effort to curb car theft.

“We urgently need public education programs on theft prevention, recovery of county auto theft teams, and protocols for reporting financed vehicles exported through identity theft,” CFLA president Michael Rothe said in a media statement.

The author of what'snew2day.com is dedicated to keeping you up-to-date on the latest news and information.

Latest stories