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Old 05-09-12, 01:26 AM   #1
Jed19 
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Crooked Bike Shop in Los Angeles

I just read this story in the L.A. Times about stolen high-end bicycles and the thieves. A local bike shop in LA (not identified) was receiving stolen goods, chopping up the bikes and selling parts.

Does anyone know the applicable bicycle shop?

We need to know the crooked bicycle shop!

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la...371,full.story
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Old 05-09-12, 07:50 AM   #2
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BUSTED! So. Cal. Theft Ring

Sorry, Didn't know this was posted already.

Thought I would share the article on "Tour De Theft" in case anyone had their high-end bike stolen. Makes me mad! But then again, when I had sold my bikes on CL, I never tell anyone where I live and will meet them in a parking lot, in the daylight, with people around.

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la...,1579820.story

Hopefully most of the victims will be able to recover their property.

Ride Safe

Last edited by SirVelo; 05-09-12 at 10:56 AM. Reason: Already posted
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Old 05-09-12, 08:12 AM   #3
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I didn't see it before, thanks for posting. IMHO here's the problem:

Quote:
"The stolen bikes were delivered to the owner of a Los Angeles cycling shop. The owner of the shop, who is under investigation but cooperating with detectives, purchased the bikes for several hundred dollars each. The bikes were stripped of their valuable components and resold, Sheriff's Sgt. Michael Maher said."


How can they give that shop owner a pass? He's the reason those guys kept stealing bikes. Seriously? 3 fat guys keep showing up at your shop selling 5k+ bikes for a few hundred dollars? He's as culpable as the thieves.
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Old 05-09-12, 08:21 AM   #4
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Wonder if it's related to this:

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...937-Bike-Thief

Glad they got caught....but they'll be back.
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Old 05-09-12, 08:30 AM   #5
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A couple people from my club got their stolen bike recovered.
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Old 05-09-12, 10:03 AM   #6
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A couple people from my club got their stolen bike recovered.
As a result of this particular arrest? Or just in general.

The only thing worse than thieves is pointless destruction (grafitti, broken windows, slashed tires, keyed cars etc)
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Old 05-09-12, 10:05 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
I didn't see it before, thanks for posting. IMHO here's the problem:



[/FONT][/COLOR][/LEFT]How can they give that shop owner a pass? He's the reason those guys kept stealing bikes. Seriously? 3 fat guys keep showing up at your shop selling 5k+ bikes for a few hundred dollars? He's as culpable as the thieves.
I agree the shopowner is also a thief. That is why he wasn't selling the bikes and was instead chopping them up for parts he then sold.

It does not take a genius to figure out that if a clown was selling you $(5000-8000) bikes for pennies on the dollar, then something is "rotten".

Of course, he knew he was buying stolen goods, and the cops should at least charge him with fencing/receiving stolen goods. And we need to know the shop's name, so that this guy is driven out of business.
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Old 05-09-12, 10:07 AM   #8
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Wow! Twice arrested for the same thing. Hopefully they'll get more than a 'slap on the wrist' this time. I'm glad I ride a Huffy. (Had to say that for when those jokers get out again and start up where they left off.)
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Old 05-09-12, 11:08 AM   #9
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Wow! Twice arrested for the same thing. Hopefully they'll get more than a 'slap on the wrist' this time. I'm glad I ride a Huffy. (Had to say that for when those jokers get out again and start up where they left off.)
Very sad but they'll post bail, get another slap on the wrist and resume their operation elsewhere. Probably combine forces with the SART thieves. Only hope the next judge and prosecutors are cyclists.

Yep, I have a Huffy too but with Zipp wheels!
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Old 05-09-12, 11:29 AM   #10
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Who's the store? We gotta know who's accepting the stolen goods to warn the cycling community.
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Old 05-09-12, 03:08 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
[/FONT][/COLOR][/LEFT]How can they give that shop owner a pass? He's the reason those guys kept stealing bikes. Seriously? 3 fat guys keep showing up at your shop selling 5k+ bikes for a few hundred dollars? He's as culpable as the thieves.
The article doesn't say the shop owner is getting a pass. It says he is "under investigation but cooperating with detectives." Most likely translation: he is cooperating in exchange for reduced charges. Nothing new or particularly remarkable; it is how any number of police investigations work.

I do agree that the rat fink deserves to have his shop's name outed. His name, too.
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Old 05-09-12, 03:26 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
I didn't see it before, thanks for posting. IMHO here's the problem:



[/FONT][/COLOR][/LEFT]How can they give that shop owner a pass? He's the reason those guys kept stealing bikes. Seriously? 3 fat guys keep showing up at your shop selling 5k+ bikes for a few hundred dollars? He's as culpable as the thieves.
Amen to that.

You dont bust up a custom setup that is ascetically pleasing and functioning well to get a higher dollar for the bike. Dude was running a chop shop. I hope they are nor easy on him

Kudos to the Sheriff and staying alert and proactive. Job well done Sargent. If not for him they would still be operating.

I am glad they brought the girl into the article. It added the depth of how many of us feel about our bike.
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Old 05-09-12, 04:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
As a result of this particular arrest? Or just in general.

The only thing worse than thieves is pointless destruction (grafitti, broken windows, slashed tires, keyed cars etc)
Yup from this one.
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Old 05-09-12, 04:59 PM   #14
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The article doesn't say the shop owner is getting a pass. It says he is "under investigation but cooperating with detectives." Most likely translation: he is cooperating in exchange for reduced charges. Nothing new or particularly remarkable; it is how any number of police investigations work.

I do agree that the rat fink deserves to have his shop's name outed. His name, too.
I actually think he's worse than the thieves themselves. They won't steal what they can't easily get rid of.
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Old 05-09-12, 05:31 PM   #15
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Very sad but they'll post bail, get another slap on the wrist and resume their operation elsewhere. Probably combine forces with the SART thieves. Only hope the next judge and prosecutors are cyclists.

Yep, I have a Huffy too but with Zipp wheels!
They'll post bail, but the slap on the wrist is a felony if the bike stolen is valued at over $1,000. I don't think I need to mention what happens when a person in California has too many felonies.
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Old 05-09-12, 05:42 PM   #16
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They'll post bail, but the slap on the wrist is a felony if the bike stolen is valued at over $1,000. I don't think I need to mention what happens when a person in California has too many felonies.
Not trying to nit-pick the details, but I do believe anything over $400 is Grand Theft - a felony. I think burglary is as well. Also, even if it's under $400, petty theft with priors is a felony. I used to do retail loss prevention, however, things may have changed.
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Old 05-09-12, 06:30 PM   #17
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Not trying to nit-pick the details, but I do believe anything over $400 is Grand Theft - a felony. I think burglary is as well. Also, even if it's under $400, petty theft with priors is a felony. I used to do retail loss prevention, however, things may have changed.
As of this year, $950+ is Grand Theft and with minimal argument on the prosecution results in a felony charge (it's tough to get it knocked down to misdemeanor). We do well on our campus catching bike thieves and getting our felony convictions.

http://sites.uci.edu/bikeuci/convict...-bike-thieves/
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Old 05-09-12, 07:23 PM   #18
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I was just watching channel 9 news and they identified the crooked bicycle shop.

The shop is called Bike Lane, and it is located on Venice Blvd.

So, there is your bike fence. On the news, they showed really high-end bikes, all stripped down.
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Old 05-09-12, 09:36 PM   #19
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While I don't sell or buy on craigslist, I have a friend who does. He has the prospected buyer meet him right in front of the police station in our neighboring town. He uses his cell phone to take pics of the vehicle and the buyer as they pull up. I'm not saying this is the perfect sales tactic but it works for him!
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Old 05-09-12, 10:56 PM   #20
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Some of you on this board might know that I have been selling my carbon cyclocross bike on here and CL for about a year. It is a custom built cross bike and I was asking about $4,000. I received tons of emails but all of them were obviously Nigerian scammers. Then one day I got an email from someone who claimed to be in Weschester and was interested in my bike. He asked for my number and called me that night.

When he called I was immediatley suspicious.

Some might think this is racist BUT....he spoke like a cholo gangster and didnt ask any serious or relevant questions about the bike that a serious cross racer would ask.

Long story short....LACSO called me last month and asked if someone had contacted me about buying my bike and if so if I had sold it or met the person or if it had been stolen.

I explained my story.

I am assuming these are the guys.

Good job to the LA County Sheriffs !!!

btw - i still have the bike in case anyone is interested
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Old 05-10-12, 12:42 AM   #21
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Bike shop should get busted for buying and selling stolen goods. For the shop not being suspicious about all the bikes and parts by the same people is hard to explain away.
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Old 05-10-12, 01:57 AM   #22
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That Bike Lane bike shop is guilty. They thought they could get away with it. Why else would they sell off component like a chop shop? Did these guys appear as cyclists? After bringing in multiple bikes, did this not raise suspicion. Makes you wonder how much more involved they could have been. Disgusted...
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Old 05-10-12, 09:48 AM   #23
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While I don't sell or buy on craigslist, I have a friend who does. He has the prospected buyer meet him right in front of the police station in our neighboring town. He uses his cell phone to take pics of the vehicle and the buyer as they pull up. I'm not saying this is the perfect sales tactic but it works for him!
Actually that is incredibly brilliant!

Just a warning to everyone... never, I repeat never give personal information out to someone from CL. Always arrange to meet in a public place for transactions and always ask for CASH. Do not accept money orders or cashier's checks. Accepts checks only from a known reliable source. If through the mail, use a P O Box or business address. CL is a thief's best friend!
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Old 05-10-12, 05:54 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Durockrolly View Post
While I don't sell or buy on craigslist, I have a friend who does. He has the prospected buyer meet him right in front of the police station in our neighboring town. He uses his cell phone to take pics of the vehicle and the buyer as they pull up. I'm not saying this is the perfect sales tactic but it works for him!
This is intriguing. In fact, with this tactic, I may actually consider buying off of Craigslist.
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Old 05-10-12, 06:36 PM   #25
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Greetings Bicycle Riders,

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department has just concluded an investigation into a residential burglary crew, operating throughout Southern California. These Suspects identified bicycle riders through Facebook, geotagged photos and Craigslist. They created email accounts with fictitious names and communicated with their victims until they gathered enough information to identify their houses and bicycles. Armed with that info, they compared the photos of the houses to street view photos on the internet, and researched the victims on White Pages Online. In the middle of the night, they drove to the house, burglarized the garages and stole the bikes.

Your email address was in the computer belonging to the crooks. It appears as though they have communicated with you identifying themselves as Joe Wayne or Mark Silverstein (both YAHOO email accounts). They may have negotiated with you about the purchase of a bike or just talked about the hobby, which they had in common with you. It is likely that you ultimately emailed them a photo of your bike.

If you were targeted during a residential burglary and your high end bicycle (or component) was stolen, PLEASE contact me immediately by replying to this email address. The information that I will need is:

Police report number (if crime was reported)
Date/Time of theft
Description of stolen property, including serial numbers

The goal is to return the stolen property to the rightful owners and prosecute these thieves, but we cannot do this without supporting documentation, so take the time to locate receipts or paperwork for your stolen property. We will ultimately have photos available. Most components have been removed and sold, however we have frames and rims/tires.

I understand that you may be skeptical about the origin of this email (considering the manner in which you have already been victimized). Feel free to call me directly and I will be happy to provide verifiable credentials, if needed.

We currently have approximately 40 bicycles and 100 wheels in custody.

Thanks for your time.

Lt. Kent A. Wegener
Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
Major Crimes Bureau-Metro Detail
562-946-7008 office
562-762-7019
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