Man who stole £200,000 worth of cars and produced cannabis from home jailed for three years
- Credit: Archant
A man who stole more than 10 cars worth more than £200,000 combined using keyless technology and produced cannabis from his home factory has been jailed.
Valdas Raudis was identified in a Cambridgeshire police investigation where he was linked to the high-tech thefts across the region.
The 43-year-old, who was previously convicted of similar thefts in Lithuania and Germany, used sophisticated equipment to gain access to victims’ cars without detection.
The investigation found he was able to scan and obtain victims’ car key fob frequencies from within houses and drive the vehicles away without detection.
Raudis was the partner in crime of Paulius Puras who was convicted earlier this year and received a 28-month prison sentence.
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Puras helped Raudis with eight of the ten thefts which took place between June 13 and October 18 last year.
The cars taken were:
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• Nissan Qashqai in Thorney
• Volvo XC60 in Stanground
• Kia Sportage in Werrington
• Land Rover Discovery in Orton Northgate
• Kia Sportage in Orton Wistow
• Hyundai Tucson in Northborough
• Kia Sportage in Stanground
• Nissan Juke in Stanground
• Nissan Juke in Werrington
• Ford Mondeo Vignale in Parnwell
Six out of the ten vehicles were recovered by police after being hidden in communal car parks across Peterborough.
On March 5, 2020, officers conducted a warrant at Raudis’ home address in West Town, Peterborough, where they found and arrested him.
After he was arrested officers searched his property and found a cannabis production set up in the loft, later valued at £12,700. They also seized £11,655 in cash.
Raudis appeared at Peterborough Crown Court on April 3 where he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to steal motor vehicles, production of cannabis, possession of criminal property and abstracting electricity.
He was sentenced on Tuesday, May 12 at Cambridge Crown Court to three years and eight months in prison.
PC Craig Trevor said: “This result today comes from nine months of investigation into Raudis and Puras’ criminal activities committing keyless vehicle thefts.
“Their actions had a significant impact on the victims as most of the vehicles stolen were family SUVs so parents were left without transport to go to work or take their children to school.
“We are committed to disrupting organised crime and I am pleased today Raudis has been brought to justice for his actions.
“Raudis and Puras took advantage of flaws in modern vehicle security.
“I would highly recommend all owners of keyless entry/start vehicles in Cambridgeshire look at purchasing foil-lined pouches for both sets of their vehicle’s key fobs.
“This will block them from emitting a frequency; you should also consider securing your vehicles with low-tech items such as ‘pedal boxes’ which block offenders from accessing the ignition pedal at night.”
More information about vehicle security can be found on the force website, visit: www.cambs.police.uk/A-Z/Vehicle-security