Halton police recover 10 stolen vehicles, Toronto man facing numerous charges


Published May 12, 2023 at 2:51 pm

Ten stolen vehicles were recovered and several charges were laid following a Halton police investigation.

Members of Project VINcent identified an organized vehicle theft ring operating in Halton and the Greater Toronto Area. Police say the suspects registered fictitious or cloned VINs (Vehicle Identification Numbers) with the Ministry of Transportation.

Once the documents were registered, the suspects put the new VINs on stolen vehicles and sold them to unsuspecting buyers. Ten of these vehicles have been recovered by the HRPS Auto Theft Task Force.

On May 11, investigators arrested Fabricio Calderon, 47, of Etobicoke. He has been charged with:

  • Uttering a forged document (25 counts)
  • Possession of a counterfeit mark (22 counts)
  • Possession of property obtained by crime over $5000
  • Possession of property obtained by crime under $5000

Police also executed a search warrant at a residence in Etobicoke.

Calderon was held in custody pending a bail hearing.

VIN cloning takes place when a suspect copies the identity of a car and attaches it to another vehicle. The “cloned” VIN is often attached to a stolen vehicle. In these cases, the VIN installed by the manufacturer is removed and replaced with the “cloned” VIN from a second vehicle. The cloned or second VIN is a valid and genuine number from a vehicle that is of a similar make and model to the stolen vehicle.

The HRPS is applying significant resources to investigate auto theft occurrences; however, crime prevention is a shared responsibility. Please call 911 if you witness a crime in progress or if you see suspicious persons/vehicles in your neighbourhood.

There are some measures that residents can take to decrease the chance of the vehicle being stolen:

  • Park your vehicle in a locked garage
  • Block the exit of a potential target vehicle with a second vehicle parked behind it
  • Install an on-board diagnostic blocker/protector
  • Install a steering wheel lock device
  • Install an aftermarket GPS tracking device
  • Install home security cameras on the exterior of the residence

Anyone with information regarding this investigation is asked to contact the Regional Auto Theft Task Force at 905-825-4777 ext. 3407.

Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or at the website.

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