'Palestinian posed as a religious Jew to steal cars'

A Palestinian car thief wore a white knit kippa while thieving cars, in an attempt to pass as a religious Jew, police say.

March 3, 2013 16:23
1 minute read.
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A Palestinian car thief was caught in the act by police last week, while wearing a white kippa in an apparent attempt to pass as a religious Jew, Tel Aviv Police reported on Sunday.

The man was reportedly spotted by detectives who were staking out a car parked on the roof of a Ramat Aviv parking garage on Thursday.

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The car had been reported stolen the night before, and after detectives received a tip about its location, they began surveillance of the site to see who would show up to claim it. As they were watching, a young man wearing a kippa approached the vehicle, opened the front door and began trying to start the car, before detectives moved in and arrested him.

After the arrest police learned he is a 31-year-old Palestinian man from the village of Azun, south of Kalkilya.

Police said they are not sure if he stole the cars or was just going to pick them up, but the incident is consistent with how car thieves typically work inside Israel. Usually, a group of thieves from the West Bank will go into a city like Tel Aviv, steal cars and then park them somewhere like a parking garage to “cool off,” as police refer to the practice.

Later, usually the next day, the same thieves will return to the cars and drive them back to the West Bank. In other cases, they’ll tell an accomplice the make, model and location of the car, and have them pick it up and drive it to their city or village.

In this particular case, police received a tip on Thursday morning and sat watching the two vehicles until the man arrived around 4:30 in the afternoon, wearing a white knit kippa.

On Sunday, the suspect was taken for a court hearing, where his remand was extended until Tuesday.

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