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San Joaquin County task force recovers 12 sports cars at chop shop

Mar. 15—The San Joaquin County Auto Theft Task Force recovered 12 stolen vehicles and a large amount of stolen vehicle parts while serving a search warrant on Monday at a rural residential property on South Bird Road in Banta, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The investigation involved the sale of stolen vehicle parts from high-end, American-made sports cars. The recovered vehicles were in various stages of being dismantled and included 10 Chevrolet Camaros and two Chevrolet Corvettes with an estimated dollar value loss of over $600,000. The stolen vehicles and parts were determined to have been reported by numerous law enforcement agencies from San Joaquin, Alameda, San Francisco, Yolo and Stanislaus counties.

Two males were subsequently arrested on the property and booked into the San Joaquin County Jail on charges related to operating a chop shop and stolen vehicle possession. Later the same day, investigators located and arrested 34-year-old suspect Hamdy Jamali in Manteca in connection to the chop shop. Jamali was allegedly found to be in possession of a key-fobbing device and booked into the San Joaquin County Jail. On Tuesday, investigators executed another residential search warrant in Manteca related to Jamali, at which time they reportedly located and recovered two more stolen vehicles.

Investigators located a fourth suspect on Wednesday identified as 27-year-old Lloyd Bernhard of Tracy, and arrested him on similar charges related to the auto theft ring and chop shop. At the time of his arrest, Bernhard was allegedly found to be in possession of approximately 100 pills believed to be fentanyl. Bernhard was booked into the San Joaquin County Jail on auto theft related charges and felony drug charges.