Police are urging people to take care before allowing others to test drive their vehicles, following the arrest of a man allegedly involved in a spate of theft of cars listed for sale on social media.
Police have been receiving reports of motorbikes and vehicles allegedly being stolen under the guise of being taken for a test drive.
The arrest of a 35-year-old man follows an investigation by Counties Manukau Central CIB launched earlier this year.
Detective Senior Sergeant Kevin Tiernan says Police made a number of enquiries to locate the man, who was found in the Weymouth area.
He has been charged with 18 counts of theft of a motor vehicle and will next appear in the Manukau District Court on April 14.
“Police are conscious that these sorts of crimes can have create a lot of stress and worry for people.
“Our investigation remains ongoing into further reports of cars and motorbikes being stolen so Police cannot rule out the possibility of further charges being laid.”
The man is next due to appear in the Manukau District Court on April 14.
Detective Senior Sergeant Tiernan says Police urge people to keep themselves safe and use reputable sites to buy and sell goods.
“Vendors should always take steps to verify the identity of would-be purchasers intending on taking a vehicle for a test drive.
“Where possible, people should also accompany anyone wanting to go out for a test drive.
"If they refuse to provide ID or let you accompany them, then Police suggest you do not engage with them further.”