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Friday, 15 May 2020 23:08

Police Break Up FL Chop Shop Ring Targeting '80s Classic Cars

Written by Jeffrey Ross, Motorious
A 1983 El Camino that was stolen in August 2019. A 1983 El Camino that was stolen in August 2019.

The St. Petersburg Police Department in Florida announced it arrested two men in connection with a string of stolen vehicles in the Tampa Bay area.

Most were classics from the late '70s through early '90s.

 

Surveillance video and an exposed tattoo helped police conclude their 10-month investigation with the arrest of James Nethery, 38, and Jason Canady, 39. According to police, the chop shop was operating in Nethery's back yard, and more than 25 classic cars were stolen between July of last year and early 2020.

 

In most cases, the cars were stripped and then dumped around the Tampa Bay area, but WFLA is reporting that in the case of a 1986 Camaro IROC-Z, the car was stripped of valuable parts, repainted and then sold to an unsuspecting victim for $3,500. This car was stolen back in October from a man who had owned it for 17 years.

 

The beautiful 1983 El Camino shown above was stolen in August 2019, and it was later found stripped and burned.

 

St. Petersburg police worked in conjunction with five other city police departments as well as the Pinellas County Sherriff's Office to arrest the two men.

 

Nethery faces 19 counts, including 15 counts of grand theft auto, while Canady is being charged with eight, including one count of altering a VIN.

 

In some cases, the stolen cars were used to commit other burglaries before being stripped, and the men are suspected of breaking into more than 30 businesses to steal everything from shoes and cigarettes to lawn equipment.

 

We thank Motorious for reprint permission. 

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