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Police Bust Alleged "Chop Shop" In Deerfield Beach

One man is behind bars and six stolen vehicles were recovered after a Deerfield Beach "chop shop" was busted, authorities said.

A 24-year old Broward man was taken into custody Wednesday after at least six allegedly stolen vehicles and several cars parts were found in the warehouse at 116 Southeast 3rd Street, the Broward Sheriff's Office said.

A "chop shop" is a location where reportedly stolen cars are broken up and rebuilt and then sold. A number of felony charges can stem from a chop shop bust, most notably grand theft auto (or grand theft of a vehicle) which is a third-degree felony.

Other charges that can stem from a chop shop bust include the offense of operating a chop shop and charges related to altering a vehicle's VIN number.

Many police departments in Miami-Dade County have auto theft task forces that specifically target suspected chop shops. If the chop shop is believed to be a well-organized criminal enterprise, then charges related to organized crime can also be filed.

Eric Matheny is a criminal defense attorney serving Miami-Dade and Broward.