Three men charged in connection with keyless vehicle thefts after police stop BMW in Hemel Hempstead

They were detained, arrested and taken to custody

Wednesday, 6th October 2021, 4:12 pm
Updated Wednesday, 6th October 2021, 4:14 pm

Three men have been charged and remanded in connection with keyless vehicle thefts after a proactive stop by Dacorum Intervention officers.

Vytas Minkeuicus, 38, of no fixed address; Deividas Sirtau, 32, of Evanston Gardens, Ilford, Greater London; and Piotr Szmanski, 29, from Clova Road, Newham, Greater London, have all been charged with conspiracy to steal motor vehicles in connection with offences across Hertfordshire.

They have been remanded in custody and are next scheduled to appear at St Albans Crown Court on Monday 1 November.

Police

Just after 2am on Wednesday, September 29, officers from Team B Intervention stopped a BMW they believed was being driven suspiciously in Two Waters Road, Hemel Hempstead.

They searched the car and the three passengers inside, and recovered items believed to be linked to the previous keyless theft of vehicles.

The passengers were detained, arrested and taken to custody.

The BMW was also seized as part of the investigation, which is being led by the Specialist Investigation Team (SIT) and supported by Dacorum’s Local Crime Unit (LCU).

Dacorum Chief Inspector Jason Keane said: “These charges are part of a wider operation to tackle keyless thefts in Hertfordshire and are the direct result of some excellent proactive

policing work from Team B Intervention, as well as the tenacity of detectives in both our SIT and LCU.

“I want this to serve as reassurance to the people of Dacorum that we continue to be out there patrolling in the small hours, protecting our residents and tracking down those who cause the most most harm to our communities.”

If you own a keyless vehicle, there are some easy steps you can take to protect your property.

> Keep vicinity vehicle keys in a signal blocking pouch which stops the signal from your key. You can purchase Police approved ‘Secured By Design’ signal blocking pouches here.

> Keep keys away from the front of your property; either upstairs and/or hidden away is preferable.

> Check your manual or with your dealer if it is possible to switch the key’s signal off.

> For additional security, consider purchasing a steering wheel lock.

> If your vehicle has an alarm or immobiliser, ensure these are enabled.

> If your vehicle doesn’t have a tracker, consider getting one fitted. Fit a dual band tracking device that works on VHF/UHF and GPS to ensure that one tracking system is still functioning if criminals use GPS blocking techniques to avoid detection. Purchase devices to ‘Thatcham’ and ‘SBD’ approval. Vehicles equipped with a tracking device are often promptly recovered.

> Check regularly for software updates for the car.