Four Toronto residents face theft and trafficking charges after 73 vehicles stolen from across the Greater Toronto Area and valued at more than $4.5 million were recovered as part of an ongoing auto theft investigation by York Regional Police (YRP).
The investigation kicked off in September when Auto/Cargo Theft Unit investigators working with the Toronto Police Service Auto Theft Suppression Unit and the Canada Border Services Agency learned about a group of people trafficking stolen vehicles from a location in Mississauga.
“Our investigators have been working tirelessly to identify those responsible for the many thefts of high-end vehicles in York Region,” says YRP Chief Jim MacSween. “These arrests and the recovery of the stolen vehicles could not have been made without the assistance of our policing and investigative partners.”
Thieves targeted Lexus, Toyota and Honda vehicles and are linked to another 32 vehicles that police suspect were shipped overseas to either Ghana or Nigeria. Abu Sadiq Ayi, 41, Michael Atta, 32, Prince Boateng, 42, and David Ansong, 40, face charges that include trafficking in property obtained by crime over $5,000, theft of a motor vehicle over $5,000, possession of property obtained by crime over $5,000, possession of an automobile master key and theft of a motor vehicle.
“The City of Toronto has experienced an increased volume of vehicle thefts from residential driveways. This collaborative approach with our partners has led to the identification and recovery of numerous vehicles,” says Toronto Police Service Superintendent Ron Taverner. “We look forward to continuing this partnership as we address this ongoing multi-jurisdictional issue.”
Anyone with information about suspicious cross-border activity can anonymously call the Border Watch Line toll-free at 1-888-502-9060. Anyone with information regarding this investigation should contact the YRP Auto/Cargo Theft Unit at 1-866-876-5423, ext. 6651. Or, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or leave an anonymous tip at www.1800222tips.com.