Car stolen by prospective buyers

05 Jan 2017 15:41 PM

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Police are warning anyone selling cars on sites such as Gumtree to be on their guard after a recent theft offence in North Tyneside.

A man who was selling a Mini via Gumtree was contacted by a caller who wanted to come and see it. They arranged a viewing at 2.30pm on Wednesday, January 4. Two men came to an address in Monarch Court, Longbenton, posing as prospective buyers of the Mini Cooper car. They appeared to check the vehicle over and then distracted the owner and stole the Mini, driving off in it.

The silver coloured Mini Cooper registration YH56 KVT is distinctive with black go faster stripes on the bonnet and roof and black wheel arches

The offenders are described as two men, one aged 25 - 28 years, 6 feet 3-4" tall, medium build with a full beard, wearing a black North Face jacket, black trousers and a hat. The other man was slightly shorter around 6 feet 2" tall, slim build wearing glasses and a hat.

Inspector Adrian Maher said: "These types of theft are unusual but we would ask people selling vehicles to be aware that such incidents do happen and to take suitable precautions to avoid becoming a victim."
Police are appealing for witnesses and for anyone who may be offered this vehicle for sale to contact officers.

Anyone with information should call police on 101, quoting reference number 569 of 04/01/17 or ring the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Police issue the following advice for people selling vehicles on-line:
Ask the potential buyer for proof of identity and check that they have a valid driver’s licence.
Ask the buyer to check with their insurance company that they’re covered to drive your car. Even if they have a “driving other cars” policy it will probably only provide third party cover. Contact your insurance company – you may need to get temporary car insurance for the test drive.

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