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Interpol says over 1,500 stolen Canadian vehicles identified since February

Canada ranks among top 10 countries experiencing highest levels of theft so far this year
In this Nov. 8, 2018, file photo, people walk on the Interpol logo of the international police agency in Lyon, central France. Over 200 stolen Canadian vehicles have been found each week across the globe in the past few months, according to Interpol. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Laurent Cipriani

Interpol says more than 200 stolen Canadian vehicles have been found each week across the globe since February.

The international law enforcement agency says a total of more than 1,500 vehicles have been identified thanks to the RCMP’s decision earlier this year to integrate Canada’s database for stolen vehicles with Interpol’s.

Interpol’s database, which collects information from 137 countries, indicates that so far this year Canada ranks among the world’s top 10 countries for stolen vehicles.

It says thieves are attracted to Canada’s abundant supply of highly prized models such as SUVs and crossovers, which are often shipped to countries in the Middle East and West Africa, where they are traded or resold.

Interpol secretary general Jurgen Stock says in a news release today that stolen vehicles represent a significant source of revenue for transnational organized criminal groups.

Stock says stolen vehicles are used not only to traffic drugs but also as payment to other criminal networks.

READ ALSO: Feds unveil plan to tackle auto theft, including Criminal Code changes

The Canadian Press