Car2Gone: 75 Car2Go vehicles stolen in Chicago by Drew Johnson
The heist happened after the firm suspended manual background checks.
Car sharing is a novel idea that allows everyone in a community to have easy access to personal transportation. Unfortunately for those communities, criminals have discovered that car sharing is also an easy way to increase their personal wealth.
Car sharing firm Car2Go, a subsidiary of Daimler, found that out the hard way when roughly 75 cars from its Chicago fleet were stolen on April 15. Not coincidentally, that date was right after Car2Go suspended manual background checks for users in a bid to increase its customer base.
Car2Go employees tracked the stolen vehicles down to a West Chicago neighborhood and set out to retrieve them. Only when they arrived, the crooks claimed the cars were there own and refused to give them back.
Two days later Car2Go contact the Chicago Police Department and informed them about the heist, claiming the vehicles were rented fraudulently through the company's mobile application. Just a day later investigators wrapped their case and charged 21 people with misdemeanor criminal trespass to a vehicle. One of the perpetrators was also hit with a felony charge of financial identity theft, according to Bloomberg.
The 75-or-so stolen vehicles were eventually recovered, but not in as-rented condition. Several of the vehicles were stripped for parts, which were presumably sold on the black market.
Not surprisingly, Car2Go has suspended its Chicago service.