Hundreds of dealers are unwittingly accepting stolen bikes in part-exchange for new machines, police say.
The dealers, including franchises for major manufacturers, have become so keen to secure sales in the recession that they have cut corners with security checks, according to British Dealer News (BDN), the trade magazine of dealerships.
As a result, many have been caught out by “ringers” – stolen bikes given the identity of legitimate machines.
A source in the Met’s stolen vehicle unit told MCN that in a recent raid “the majority of the bikes we recovered had at some point been through the dealer system”.
He added: “We have seized bikes directly out of main dealers and dealers have gone under because we’ve taken more than one or two bikes.”
He said police had hundreds of seized bikes in storage.
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