Garage owner taking on less work due to thefts from customers’ cars 

Mike Caines says he is losing half his earnings

A garage owner from Wales says he is losing half his earnings because of thefts from customers’ cars parked outside his premises.

Mike Caines, owner of Prime Vehicle Recovery and Repairs in Newport, told WalesOnline he has been targeted three times in less than a week.

CCTV footage shows a masked person riding a bike up to the garage, entering a customer’s BMW and removing a laptop and bag. In a separate incident, opening the driver’s door triggered the alarm, but this didn’t deter the thief from rummaging inside the car.

Mr Caines says he is now taking on less work, telling WalesOnline: “I checked all the cars each night and all the cars were locked, but when they come up to it on the CCTV the cars are clearly open and don’t take any effort to open.

“I don’t know if they’ve come around at some point in the night and unlocked it using a thing you can get online to interfere with the keys and the lock. 

“We used to get vehicles dropped off by recovery throughout the afternoon and evening and they used to just post the key. Now I can’t allow that to happen because I can’t risk them being broken into. I can’t be left responsible. 

“I’ve had to put signs up now saying I can’t be held responsible. As much as I don’t want to do that, I’ve got to do it. All we can do is lock the cars. So we’ve stopped taking on half the work because I don’t want the cars here overnight.

“On the third time it happened again to my van but I just noticed everything was pulled out of it. I don’t keep anything valuable in the van so I didn’t report that one to the police. But one of the cars that they broke into had a laptop in there.

”Oddly they didn’t take the laptop and just yanked the ashtray off and stole the change. They went through the car, the boot, the doors, everything, not even fazed by the cars driving past.

“We were taking seven or eight cars a day and now I’m taking four. I’m just taking on the vehicles that turn up in the morning and can be in the workshop and that’s it then. I can’t risk it anymore. It’s costing me a fortune, I’m losing money because I’m not taking the work on, but it’s making me look bad when customers are having their cars back and I’m having to say ‘Look, this has happened.’”

Source: WalesOnline

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