Theft Date: October
Stolen items: about 100 construction vehicles
Authorities have busted two individuals believed to be involved in a statewide auto-theft ring in Miami.
The stolen items included dump trucks — some valued at upward of $100,000 — pickup trucks and construction equipment.
Two Miami men, Jose M. Delcosme, 40, and Yunier Fernandez-Rodriguez, 27, were charged with taking two stolen trucks, which had been hidden behind a Brevard County hotel last week, and driving them to South Florida Tuesday morning.
A couple of days before the arrest, the St. Lucie County deputies spotted the trucks behind the motel and got curious, discovering that they had been stolen. They assigned surveillance, hoping to catch the thieves. At 3 a.m. Tuesday, October 30, the two men showed up and drove the trucks south toward Miami. Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office launched a helicopter and followed them to the Broward line. Then Florida Highway Patrol picked up the surveillance and followed the vehicles to Miami-Dade.
The combined effort led them to a nondescript building at 3237 NW 67th St. in Miami. There authorities found two more dump trucks — also stolen — and a new 2008 Ford F-350 “duelly” pickup.
“It’s like a treasure trove,” Lt. Pat Santangelo said of the warehouse, where authorities also found stolen truck parts and diesel engines, many apparently from upstate Florida.
About 100 construction vehicles, including bulldozers, have been stolen in the northern part of the state in the past few months, authorities said.
It was not immediately known whether Delcosme and Fernandez-Rodriguez were linked to the other thefts, police said.