Scrap metal sales are behind a spate of car thefts across Sydney, New South Wales police say.
According to a Daily Telegraph report today (December 18), police have seen an influx of car thefts in the Harbour City, where vehicles are being crushed and sold for scrap metal.
Detective inspector Paul Albury told the newspaper that Operation Snare in Campsie has identified up to 100 cars - many of which are owned by tradespeople and backpackers - that have been crushed and sold off.
More than 30 number plates were recovered by Mt Druitt police near a scrap metal yard recently, with the cars never actually found.
Inspector Albury said squashed vehicles fetch between $300 and $500 apiece.
He commented: "It mightn't seem a lot for a car but it's cash money and when they do it in large numbers it's quite profitable."
In the wake of the thefts, Sydney tradies may want to be more vigilant when it comes to the security of their motor vehicles.
Parking in secure locations and installing alarms may minimise the risk of theft, as will finding another location to store expensive tools.
Many tradies use their cars or utes to store equipment, which may encourage thieves - by not doing this, crooks may be deterred.