Galveston Auto Crimes Task Force Breaks Up Multi-Million Dollar Theft Ring

Galveston Auto Crimes Task Force Breaks Up Multi-Million Dollar Theft Ring

In June 2023, the Galveston County Auto Crimes Task Force initiated an investigation into a series of auto thefts targeting Texas City refineries and the Tanger Outlet Mall. The perpetrators focused on stealing 2020 and newer GM pick-up trucks, swiftly relocating them to different parts of the state or across the Mexico border.

After an extensive probe, investigators identified six suspects responsible for over $600,000 worth of auto thefts in Galveston County and more than $4 million in combined thefts across several surrounding counties. Subsequently, arrest warrants were issued for all six individuals on charges of 1st Degree Felony – Engaging in Organized Criminal Activity. The suspects, all residents of Houston, were apprehended on January 30-31, 2024, and transported to the Galveston County Jail.

The arrested individuals are Fabian Rodriguez, Jose Martinez, Alejandro Reyes, Juan Rodriguez, and Michael Villegas. They are currently held on a $200,000 bond each. Additionally, one of the six defendants, who was 16 years old during the thefts, was processed through the Texas City Juvenile Detention Center.

Eight out of the twelve stolen vehicles from Galveston County, along with numerous stolen vehicles from surrounding counties, have been successfully recovered.

The joint effort to apprehend these suspects involved the collaboration of various law enforcement agencies, including the Galveston Police Department, Texas City Police Department, Houston Police Department, Harris County Sheriff’s Office, Department of Public Safety, U.S. Marshals, and the Texas Attorney General’s Office.