By The Canadian Press
VANCOUVER – Police in Vancouver and Surrey, B.C., combined resources to break up a sophisticated theft operation they say was responsible for hundreds of crimes a month.
Vancouver police say they acted on a tip that owners of a convenience store on King George Boulevard in Surrey were taking in large amounts of stolen property.
Police allege the operation acted as a so-called predatory fence, purchasing property that had been stolen by drug addicts supporting their habits and then selling it back to retailers, at flea markets or sending it overseas.
Investigators used search warrants at the business and two homes in Surrey and seized $10,000 in cash and about $100,000 in stolen property.
Police say they also seized over-the-counter medications they believe were being sold to produce methamphetamine in illegal labs.
Three people, ranging in age from 49 to 61, were arrested and have been released pending approval of criminal charges.