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Police: Tampa auto repair business was operating as a chop shop

Published Jan. 11, 2018

An auto repair business was shut down Wednesday after Tampa Police say it operating as a chop shop.

Police searched Express Auto Repair, 3222 N 40th St., on Wednesday after receiving information that armed individuals who were involved with stealing cars were known to frequent the property.

Upon arriving, police say they found several people who said they were customers although no owner or employee could be located.

During a search, police say the found 85 vehicles on the property, including several that had been stolen. Included were a 2012 Nissan Altima vehicle, reported stolen out of Temple Terrace; a 1996 Buick Park Avenue, stolen in Tampa and used in a carjacking; and a 14-foot aluminum trailer that had been stolen out of Tampa.

The owner has yet to be identified, police say, and all the vehicles and equipment are being impounded or returned to their owners.