BRADFORD, England — A crime victim who turned private detective with the help of a smartphone app tracked down his stolen £40,000 ($52,000) Mercedes-Benz and led police to a storage unit where the car sat.
Hassan Liaquat, 27, was devastated when his C250 was stolen from the driveway of his home in the Horton Bank Top area in the early hours of Sept. 14 while he slept.
He reported the theft to police, put out appeals for its return on social media and obtained a tracker app from his car dealership to download on his phone.
The tracker soon showed up a location signal and Liaquat, who works for banks, was able to follow it to a locked unit in Centre Street, off Little Horton Lane.
“When I got there the unit was all locked up. I had a spare key for the car and I could hear it on the other side opening and locking when I pressed the fob,” he said.
Mr Liaquat called police, who went to the premises and opened them up.
“The car’s outside wasn’t damaged but the back seats had been taken out. Whoever took it was probably trying to find the tracker,” he said.
“They’d started stripping it. The plates had also been changed.
“They knew I had that car. They must have been watching me. They or someone else wanted it and they took it.
“I was desperate to get it back. It cost me nearly £40,000 when I bought it new last year. It’s my pride and joy.”
Liaquat said he had left his car keys on top of the fireplace along with keys to three other cars on the drive, but those were not taken.
“It’s so scary to think we were all asleep when they broke in,” he said.
“We’ve had all the locks changed now and replaced with stronger ones.
“We won’t be leaving the keys anywhere so obvious in future. I’m hoping to get my car back from police soon.”
A spokesman for West Yorkshire police said reports had been received of a Mercedes being stolen from an address in Windermere Road. Police said the car was recovered on Sept.15 and the premises in Centre Street where it was discovered were being searched and inquiries were ongoing.
Telegraph & Argus