'Project Heisenburg' uncovers organized auto theft ring, two men charged
Two men have been charged in trafficking more than $500,000 worth of stolen vehicles.
The Ottawa Police Service Organized Auto Theft Section launched the investigation, dubbed “Project Heisenberg”, in October 2016 in Ottawa's west-end along with the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario, Service Ontario, Insurance Bureau of Canada, and the Canada Border Services Agency.
Seized stolen re-vinned vehicles include:
- 2016 Ford F-250 Lariat King Ranch
- 2016 Ford F-250 Lariat
- 2016 Toyota 4Runner Limited
- 2015 Toyota 4Runner Limited
- 2016 GMC Sierra Denali 2500 HD Duramax
- 2015 GMC Sierra Denali 2500 HD Duramax
Buyers were told vehicles did not have a warranty on test models or "gift" vehicles from manufacturers. The stolen vehicles were sold at discount prices using fraudulent bills of sale from legitimate dealers.
Ferry Emile Cave, 42, of Carleton Place and Rodrigue Leonard, 53, of Ottawa face multiple charges including money laundering and possession of property obtained by crime.
Police say it’s buyer beware when it comes to purchasing vehicles and that consumers enjoy a level of protection when purchasing a vehicle through an Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council (OMVIC dealer).
The investigation is ongoing and police say more arrests are possible.