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Police have arrested five men aged 27-32 for stealing nearly 100 cars from different parking lots across Hanoi.
Le Hoang Dat, 30, a Hanoi resident, has been identified as the ring leader.
Dat got involved in car theft after suffering a heavy cryptocurrency loss, plunging him into debt.
He had stolen cars from different parking lots across the capital.
Knowing many car owners chose to leave their keys with security, Dat on several occasions convinced the guards he himself was the owner of a certain parked vehicle.
Normally, he would wait until the guards swapped shifts before taking action.
Since the new guard would be unacquainted with the original owner’s face, Dat would ask him for the key.
At this point, he would pick a random key before entering the parking area, where he pressed the button to find which car would respond, and drive away.
Dat would pawn each stolen car at a pawnshop run by Nguyen Thanh Cong, 32, who also resides in Hanoi.
Cong hired Nguyen Huu Tu, 28, and Nguyen Huu Trung, 27, both living in Hanoi, to take care of the necessary paperwork.
Nguyen Ngoc Ha, 32, who lives in northern Hai Duong Province, took charge of later selling the stolen cars.
Cong operated seven parking lots and six warehouses at different locations to store the pawned vehicles.
To date, police have discovered nearly 100 stolen cars among Cong’s warehouses.
They are expanding the investigation.
This article was originally published in VnExpress