Car Thieves Caught Stealing Vehicles on Road 444

A sting operation by a police unit specializing in car theft Monday led to the arrest of four car-jackers, police said Tuesday.

The four Taibeh residents were caught by detectives from the Etgar unit as they tried to car-jack two vehicles that belonged to the detectives. The cars had been placed as "bait" just off Road 444, between Rosh Ha'ayin and Kochav Ya'ir.

Two of the four suspects threatened the detectives at gunpoint as they were sitting in one of the cars. The detectives abandoned the vehicle, and then chased and caught the thieves.

The Etgar unit believes that the four suspects had taken part in numerous burglaries on Road 444 in recent months. The unit, which specializes in car burglary cases, will continue its work as they believe that more car thieves have not yet been caught.

According to a Ha'aretz report, Road 444 has recently been plagued by numerous car burglaries; in 2002, over 60 cars were car-jacked on the road.

Most of the stolen vehicles are transferred to areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority, where they are dismantled and individual parts are sold across the territories.