Man charged with stealing nearly 2,000 car key Fobs and selling them on eBay
- The accused reportedly made a fortune of $60,570 by stealing and selling key Fobs of new vehicles.
A Dearborn, Michigan man has been charged with stealing and selling more than 1,900 new car key Fobs within an estimated six-month window. The man is said to have been involved in the scam while working at a rail transfer facility of Auto Warehousing Company, a contractor of CSX Transportation.
As per an affidavit by a US Postal Inspector, cars from Ford, Fiat and General Motors would arrive at the rail yard to be distributed across the country via trains, Detroit Free Press reported. These would come unlocked and usually with two key Fobs tied together. As part of his job, the 41-year-old accused Jason Gibbs would drive these newly arrived vehicles and line them up at assigned parking rows before they were driven onto the trains.
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This is when he was stealing the key Fobs and selling them on eBay. The man is said to have made a fortune of $60,570 (approximately ₹45 lakh) during the action, the report added.
The matter first came to light when the car companies began to make complaints about the missing key Fobs to the rail vehicle transporter, CSX, beginning February 2018. This was after the car dealers established the pattern of missing Fobs coming from a certain facility. Many missing Fobs were linked to Ford's F-150 pickups. Following a two-year long investigation by US federal authorities, Gibbs was officially charged recently with stealing and selling keys of new vehicles.
The investigators found that the stolen car keys were being sold by an eBay. They sifted through a web of eBay, Instagram, PayPal, and Facebook accounts to establish the link to the accused before finally searching his home. Gibbs admitted to the crime and was fired from work five days after. Investigators believe the final buyers of the stolen fobs would reprogram them and use them on other vehicles.