Gardaí issue warning about scam involving Ford Transit vans

Organised crime gang involved in sale and distribution of stolen machinery and engines

Detectives in Granard are investigating an organised crime gang involved in the international sale and distribution of stolen machinery as well as vehicle engines and parts. Photograph: iStock

Detectives in Granard are investigating an organised crime gang involved in the international sale and distribution of stolen machinery as well as vehicle engines and parts. Photograph: iStock

 

Gardaí have appealed for the owners of Ford Transit vans to only allow qualified mechanics in garages to carry out work on their vehicles following the discovery of a scam.

Detectives in Granard are investigating an organised crime gang involved in the international sale and distribution of stolen machinery as well as vehicle engines and parts.

The gang places adverts on popular online sales sites offering to repair or replace the engines of Ford Transit vans.

The advert offers to collect the van, carry out repairs or if necessary, replace the engine with a reconditioned one and return it to the owner.

Once the gang has the van, a stolen engine is fitted and the owner is told it’s a re-conditioned one. Some owners, after paying for repairs, have subsequently had their vans seized by gardaí and incurred further loss.

“Gardaí from the Roscommon/Longford Division are advising owners of all vehicles and particularly the owners of Ford Transit vans to be very wary responding to such adverts whether online or offline offering engine replacement on a collect and return basis,” said a Garda spokesman.

“You are taking a big risk giving your van to a stranger who collects it from your door and takes it away for repairs to an unknown location.

“If you are a victim, this scam will have cost you money and your van will be seized by gardaí. Our advice is that you should only allow a qualified mechanic in a garage that you know to repair your car or van.”