3 men held over theft of 91 vehicles in Tokyo, 10 prefectures


Police have arrested three men over the theft and resale of 91 cars and a truck in Tokyo and 10 prefectures over the past two years.

The three men, who all live in Koga, Ibaraki Prefecture, have admitted to the charge, police said, adding that total value of the stolen vehicles was about 237.6 million yen, Fuji TV reported.

According to police, the vehicles were stolen in Tokyo, Chiba, Gunma, Tochigi and Ibaraki prefectures, as well as the Tohoku region, between July 2015 and October 2016. Police named Yoshiro Sato, 46, as the ringleader of the group. Police quoted Sato as saying they placed forged license plates on the stolen vehicles and then sold them as used cars for an average of 550,000 yen.

The group stole the vehicles from used car lots as well as cars parked on the street.

© Japan Today

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

Login to comment

Buyer beware..... If it's too good to be true, it probably is.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The must be a lot of extremely gullible car buyers out there for these guys to have sold so many. If the cars had forged plates, they must have also had a shakken-sho (registration form) to go with them, which has the number plate clearly printed on it. if the cars are sold without plates the buyer should have had the common sense to check the chassis number with the police.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Most likely already on their way to Africa, ME or China either whole or as parts.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

A man and woman posed as police investigating my son's "accident" Honda S2000. Showed fake credentials. Car key was forged by mechanic at unofficial (not manufacturer's) carshop. That night they drove off . Hope some security cameras along the route caught and traced them.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

@seirei sorry to hear that. I heard there are impostor with fake credential out there but I never heard before you post your comment their target are vehicles. Is it possible that you're referring the same people that mentioned in this news?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I wonder in how many of those cases the police told the victims the thief was probably Chinese or Korean.....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The easiest car in Japan to steal is the old hatchback Prius because the protection on the keyless lock and the keyless ignition have been hacked. You can get in and start the engine with an electronic gizmo made in China.

sold them as used cars for an average of 550,000 yen

For that much (little) in a private sale, it means a lot of the cars must have been old. That will be less than the typical trade in on many seven year old cars and the majority of 10 year old ones. So anyone buying an older car needn't be suspicious if someone is selling one for 400,000 yen or so because that's still more than a dealer would pay the owner for a trade in. Old cars are worth next to nothing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm skeptical! Without the car's documents matching the plates who in their right mind would buy such a vehicle and then when the next shaken is due, it would be impossible to get a new roadworthy certificate.also, private car sales in Japan are so that would suggest that these men had a lot or a garage.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

it would be impossible to get a new roadworthy certificate.**** not if they had damaged / crashed cars. they can cut out the vin numbers and have them welded and painted into the same stolen vehicles. Roadworthy test only check the VIN number, engines numbers arnt recorded on registration documents

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So not only did these individuals spend time trawling prefectures for cars of the same make that they already had a damaged clone for but they also had garages where the car cloning could be carried out on over 91 cars? And only three people are being held?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yubaru. Stolen high model cars are dismantle and sending to overseas inside container. They will reassemble the whole car when the car was arrived in their country.

In the 90s, Pakistanis gang export stolen high models cars to Middle East and other Asia Countries. One of my Burmese Muslim friend from Burma was arrested for related to buying stolen cars and sending it to overseas as well as money laundering charge. He was given two years sentence for his involvement.

They can't sell whole car to Japanese buyers. The buyers may wreck and sell for parts. In my friend's case, sometime he sent whole car in container and sometime the seller dismantle the whole car and put in the container as parts. They will reassemble when the car was arrived in country. The organization is very sophisticate and very difficult to infiltration by ordinary Japanese.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites