One man has been arrested after a Mercedes GLC AMG was stolen in the early hours of this morning without the keys in Epsom. The victim woke up to find his Mercedes being driven off the driveway and immediately contacted Police.
After ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) cameras sighted the stolen vehicle, the chase began on the M25 at junction 6, continuing into Kent and onto the M2, then to the Dartford Crossing, and finally back on the A13 towards London before being forced to stop in Dagenham.
The pursuit involved traffic units from Surrey, Kent, Essex and the Met. The NPAS helicopter was also deployed.
The driver, a 36-year-old man from Dagenham was arrested for theft of a motor vehicle. He was then further arrested when checks in custody revealed he was also disqualified from driving as well as being wanted for other offences. The man remains in custody.
In the vehicle, officers found a scanning device used for stealing high end vehicles with keyless entry. The Mercedes was convoyed back to Surrey and the car has now been returned to the victim.
Sergeant Wallis of the Epsom Neighbourhood Patrol team said: “This was an excellent outcome, which was a result of the continuing teamwork of officers from across the region.
“The investigation is ongoing at this time and we are appealing for any potential witnesses to the theft of the Mercedes on Squirrels Way in Epsom at around 3am this morning, or the extensive pursuit to call us on 101, quoting incident reference 45200024601.
“This is an escalating crime type, which we are dedicated to putting a stop to, however there are measures that the public can take to help prevent them from becoming victims themselves. If your car is equipped with keyless entry, it is important to keep remote car keys away from the front of properties, in foil lined (or faraday) key boxes and to utilise security lighting to deter would be thieves.”
With growing numbers of cars being stolen via keyless theft, Surrey Police have created a video with some tips and advice on how you can keep your car safe: