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Bike theft goes international

Old 06-12-24, 11:48 PM
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Bike theft goes international

I hope this is the correct forum for this. Interesting read:

https://www.wired.com/story/silicon-...alisco-mexico/
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Old 06-13-24, 06:22 AM
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damn paywall
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Old 06-13-24, 06:49 AM
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Unbelievable!
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Old 06-13-24, 08:03 AM
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My bikes are low tech vintage for the most part. Hopefully will not attract thieves.
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Old 06-13-24, 08:35 AM
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New story about the same stuff that's been going on for many decades.
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Old 06-13-24, 11:45 AM
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I thought with the increase of bike sharing programs bike theft would decrease.
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Old 06-13-24, 11:51 AM
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Yup. More reason to stay out of the bay. This is why we can't have nice things.
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Old 06-13-24, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Robvolz
damn paywall
Copy/paste any article URL into the search of archive.is, and you'll get a non-paywalled version to read.

https://archive.is/FJTkg
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Old 06-13-24, 07:39 PM
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I didn't get the paywall.

Sorry.

(Brave Browser, legal bypass: https://github.com/iamadamdev/bypass-paywalls-chrome )
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Old 06-15-24, 07:12 AM
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That was a very interesting read. Both fascinating and infuriating.
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Old 06-15-24, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Iride01
New story about the same stuff that's been going on for many decades.
You should read the article.
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Old 06-15-24, 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
You should read the article.
I did. But once you get all the human interest part out of the way it's the same thing that's been going on for ages. Just different people and different tools of the trade on both sides.
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Old 06-15-24, 09:52 AM
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Non-news flash: there are people who realize that stealing expensive bicycles and selling them in an organized fashion is still profitable.
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Old 06-15-24, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Iride01
I did. But once you get all the human interest part out of the way it's the same thing that's been going on for ages. Just different people and different tools of the trade on both sides.
The mix of $10K+ bikes, the international theft ring aspect, and very brazen internet resale of a vast stock of stolen bicycles, as well as the BikeIndex OC sleuthing are all inconsistent with "been going on for ages."

(I guess I was being generous in assuming that you hadn't bothered to look before commenting, here and in the other thread.)
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Old 06-15-24, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
The mix of $10K+ bikes, the international theft ring aspect, and very brazen internet resale of a vast stock of stolen bicycles, as well as the BikeIndex OC sleuthing are all inconsistent with "been going on for ages."

(I guess I was being generous in assuming that you hadn't bothered to look before commenting, here and in the other thread.)
Well they weren't $10,000 bikes back then. Not certain why for the purpose of my comment that bike index matters. That's just a new tool, IMO.

Like a lot of articles today, I don't think the author researched fully and just took and made some comments suggesting this is all a new thing. When it really isn't IMO.
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Old 06-15-24, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Iride01
Well they weren't $10,000 bikes back then. Not certain why for the purpose of my comment that bike index matters. That's just a new tool, IMO.
Maybe you should read (or comprehend) the article.
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Old 06-15-24, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
Maybe you should read (or comprehend) the article.
What is it you think I need to comprehend. Or are you not comprehending the article well enough to tell us what that is?
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Old 06-15-24, 10:42 AM
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If you aren't interested in the topic, why not simply skip the two threads you have made (uninformed) comments in?
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Old 06-15-24, 10:47 AM
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Which parts are new?

One wrinkle is that is one company selling a lot of used bikes online ... as opposed to what? I assume stolen bikes have always been listed for sale online ... and I assume that the same people listed a lot of bikes since not everyone does this ... it isn't like teams were stealing for themselves, but were stealing for an organizer (nobody rents or steals a van, coveralls, and power tools and goes out stealing high-end bikes without first knowing where to fence them.

As for a Mexican crime cartel of some sort controlling a lot of theft in California and bike-friendly western locales... okay. That is new ... but how does it matter? I assume there is a similar organized-crime link to most Boston-New York-area thefts too.

Tye news that law enforcement isn't putting serious resources into recovering stolen bikes? Yes, that is a shocking change ........

When I read this article my take is ... yup, people are still stealing high-end bikes. Of course, people are still stealing bikes of all types. My bikes are not "high-end" but they are still likely to get stolen if I get careless -- obviously high-end bikes attract more organized thieves.

What is the Big News, though? There is no new technique revealed here ... pretty sure it is people breaking into buildings or cutting chains with grinders, something which has been going on for a long, long time.

There is no new tip on how to keep bikes safe.

There is really no actionable information at all.

This is a mildly interesting and reasonably well-written article (a bit hard to read in the little window because I didn't sneak around the pay wall, nor did I pay) but I only read it to see what all the debate was about and now that I read it ... meh. What is the Earthshaking News which makes this article so important?

I am not that interested in organized crime or the failure of the US government to prosecute international crime. And so far as I can see, the only real "story" here is not about bike theft, but rather about a Mexican criminal conspiracy operating with impunity in the US. The fact that it is bikes and not pure-bred poodles or cars or jewelry .... sort of incidental.
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Old 06-15-24, 11:50 AM
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Well, I liked the article.
I also like that the guy behind Bike Index has a similarly hyper developed sense of right & wrong to develop a platform with which to track, report, share, and correlate all the data. Not that much will ever come of it, it's a lot better than nothing.

For a variety of reasons not germane to the discussion, America's police have sort of decided to sit on their hands. Even if they didn't all the thief has gotta say when found in possession of stolen property is they bought it legit "from a guy in the Jimmy John's parking lot" and claim to not have a description to help the police with. Investigating anything related to stolen property is a non-starter for the police. Indeed, even reporting a theft is a waste of their time with useless customer service burdens.

It's no surprise a cartel has taken advantage of this fact. No, I don't expect this to change. But, it's nice to know someone, somewhere is concerned enough to try.

I found a Bianchi Volpe once in Seattle on Bike Index. It was stolen from Vermont, 15 years prior. None of the contact information was actionable. Re-registered and sold it.

I found a Salsa Journeyman once. It was not on Bike Index. I knew it was stolen. I bought it off the thief. After a bit of examination, I called the Bikeshop on the seat tube sticker. Explained the situation, serial number, etc...They took my information and said they'd see what they could do. After a bit the proper owner called me and we arranged to meet at the local police station. He reluctantly agreed to pay me the price I paid to get the bike back from the thief. I would've given his bike back free of charge if he declined and eaten the loss myself just to do the right thing. It happened to work out.

The shop had a bike stolen. We filed a police report and notified Bike Index. A week or 2 goes buy and a random guy shows up with a story that he'd bought the bike in a local parking lot. I said: "that's nice." wheeled the bike over to the repair stand, secured it there and had an employee call the cops. I heard every excuse in the book. I even expressed sympathy that he bought a stolen bike and unwittingly delivered it to the rightful owners. It became a game of chicken. Would he leave before the cops arrived? I told him the bike was marked and would forever be documented as stolen as long as that bike exists. He'll never be able to take it to a shop or get it serviced. I turned the computer monitor so that he could see the Bike Index page, the police report number and the bold red "STOLEN" in the status line. I then offered to sell it to him legitimately for exactly my cost to diffuse the situation. (My cost+his cost still equaled a great deal.) As soon as the cops arrived 45 minutes after the initial phone call, he bolted. Never to be heard from again.

Such is the bike world.

Last edited by base2; 06-15-24 at 11:56 AM.
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Old 06-16-24, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
If you aren't interested in the topic, why not simply skip the two threads you have made (uninformed) comments in?
If you don't like my comments, then why not just ignore them so you don't have us both filling the thread with comments many other won't care for?
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Old 06-16-24, 10:34 AM
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Thanks for the suggestion.

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Old 06-16-24, 11:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
Thanks for the suggestion.

Thank you!
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Old 06-16-24, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs
Which parts are new?

One wrinkle is that is one company selling a lot of used bikes online ... as opposed to what? I assume stolen bikes have always been listed for sale online ... and I assume that the same people listed a lot of bikes since not everyone does this ... it isn't like teams were stealing for themselves, but were stealing for an organizer (nobody rents or steals a van, coveralls, and power tools and goes out stealing high-end bikes without first knowing where to fence them.

As for a Mexican crime cartel of some sort controlling a lot of theft in California and bike-friendly western locales... okay. That is new ... but how does it matter? I assume there is a similar organized-crime link to most Boston-New York-area thefts too.

Tye news that law enforcement isn't putting serious resources into recovering stolen bikes? Yes, that is a shocking change ........

When I read this article my take is ... yup, people are still stealing high-end bikes. Of course, people are still stealing bikes of all types. My bikes are not "high-end" but they are still likely to get stolen if I get careless -- obviously high-end bikes attract more organized thieves.

What is the Big News, though? There is no new technique revealed here ... pretty sure it is people breaking into buildings or cutting chains with grinders, something which has been going on for a long, long time.

There is no new tip on how to keep bikes safe.

There is really no actionable information at all.
.
I have the solution. Develop a bicycle seat and seat post that can detect the proper butt for its true rider. If someone else uses it BOOM! some plastic explosive in the seat detonates and the thief becomes cheekless. Artificial intelligence to the rescue.
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Old 06-18-24, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Iride01
New story about the same stuff that's been going on for many decades.

Can you point me to another such instance? High dollar bicycles stolen. Transported across an international border. Being sold online in original form. U.S. officials pretty well ignored it. A citizen undertook an extensive investigation. Found a person overseas behind the thefts. Found a stateside business involved in the thefts. U.S. officials still did pretty much nothing.

I'll enjoy reading that story too.
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