LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) — Six individuals, aged 18 to 25, have been apprehended in connection with a large-scale auto theft ring responsible for stealing over 400 vehicles worth an estimated $8 million across Michigan. The arrests, made on May 15 by a specialized police task force, were announced by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel.

The suspects face multiple charges, including conducting a criminal enterprise, using a computer to commit a crime, and receiving and concealing stolen vehicles. During the operation, authorities recovered hundreds of auto parts, electronic key fobs, burglary tools, substantial cash amounts, and nine firearms. The investigation is ongoing, with two more suspects yet to be apprehended.

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Operating across more than 40 communities, from southeastern Michigan to the western part of the state, the criminal organization sold stolen vehicles at significantly below-market prices. According to a news release from Nessel’s office, some of these vehicles have been linked to serious crimes, including homicides, attempted homicides, armed robberies, and carjackings. 

Nessel emphasized the broader impact of such criminal activities: “These organizations do more than just steal vehicles; they inflict significant financial losses, create fear, and endanger lives. Stolen vehicles are often used in further violent crimes, increasing the risk to public safety.”

The arrests follow a series of similar incidents. In 2022, several members of an Ohio-based auto theft ring were apprehended for stealing Dodge muscle cars and other high-powered vehicles from dealerships and manufacturers in Michigan. These vehicles, valued between $50,000 and $100,000, were sold for as little as $3,500 to $15,000, often appearing in states like Ohio and Indiana, as well as at East Coast shipping ports.

The connection between the recent arrests in Michigan and the Ohio theft ring remains unclear as authorities continue their investigation.