Keys stolen from Jaguar Land Rover plant used to jail London crime lord

Nine sets of keys taken from the Jaguar Land Rover plant in Solihull have been linked to a massive #London crime spree.

The keys, taken from JLR’s huge Lode Lane site, formed a major part of an investigation into a crime boss who has been jailed and ordered to repay more than £1.3 million.

The Metropolitan Police said Patel, of Firth Road, Croydon, was charged in April 2017 after five vehicles in the basement of his home were found to have been stolen.

A follow-up search of the property revealed 26 sets of car keys, as well as lists of vehicles and registrations, machines for accessing on-board computers in vehicles and programming keys and a number of mobile phones, tablets and laptops.

A total of 19 stolen vehicles with an estimated value of £728,000 were later linked to Patel and seized, as well as the stolen JLR keys and a laptop stolen during a burglary in the Streatham area of London.

A lengthy investigation later showed Patel had been using the vehicles in an off-the-books vehicle rental business.

They were among 19 vehicles worth more than £700,000 found by officers after Chirag Patel was arrested in the capital.

The 40-year-old is now serving an eight-year jail sentence for conspiracy to handle stolen goods and possession of criminal property over car thefts and burglaries in the capital between October 2012 and January 2015.

The cars were also used in numerous burglaries and car thefts across London between October 2012 and January 2015, and were kept at properties belonging to Patel, his family or their associates.

The identities of the cars were hidden using legitimate insurance details of vehicles which had been written off.

Patel will serve another ten years in jail if he does not repay the cash.

Acting Det Sgt Billy Clough, who led the investigation, said: “The Met is committed to ensuring that individuals commit criminality are identified, prosecuted and their criminal assets are seized.

“The significant financial investigation undertaken by Det Con Nick Portman should also be recognised, without which substantial criminal assets would not have been recovered.”

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