The thieves thought they had managed to steal a Range Rover from a holiday home in southern Spain. Little did they know that the police followed their escape route.
The holiday took a turn for the worse for a Swedish family who were traveling to the popular destination Marbella in the south of Spain. The hot air, waves, beach life and sun were quickly replaced with anger, frustration and hopelessness. The car the family had driven and that had been parked outside the holiday home was gone.
- We got a call early in the morning from the customer, who told us that the car no longer was where it had been parked, CEO Espen Virik Ranvik in GSGroup says.
The customer still had the keys, and most likely the thieves managed to block the signals from the owner's car key when he tried to lock the car.
- The radio system used by thieves has been on the market for several years, and unlike thefts in the" old fashioned way” where windows or doors are smashed, this technology does not do any physical damage to the car, which allows it to be sold quickly, Ranvik says.
The police followed the signals from the tracking device
GSGroup is a leading European supplier of systems and services for mobile data collection and has been developing tracking systems since the early 1990s. Ranvik says that the organized criminal networks know what they want and have carefully planned routes where the goods are transported.
- We do not know where the thieves planned on taking this car, but there are several ports and ferry terminals nearby, which makes it easy to get any stolen goods out of Europe.
The car was a Range Rover which has a price of around one and a half million Norwegian kroner, and there is no doubt that the thieves gradually have acquired expensive habits.
- Marbella is a well-established holiday destination where many people gather year-round. Several of the cars and boats in the area are within the luxury segment, and it is almost like a candy store for people with dishonest intentions.
Fortunately, this story ended well. 12 hours after the car was reported stolen, it was found by the Spanish military police Guardia Civil. The Range Rover had a small tracking device that allowed the police to easily follow the escape route, which was somewhat shorter than the thieves had hoped for.
- Theft is always an unpleasant experience but can be even worse when you are on holiday. You do not know the country well and you quickly feel helpless. I want to commend the efforts of the police and our search team. They established a good team on a very short notice, and those responsible can now be held accountable for their actions. I hope the family can enjoy the rest of the holiday, Ranvik says.