Source: The Mercury, 10 January, 1997, p.7


Rising car thefts hits battlers

ABOUT 350 cars are
stolen in Australia every
day, feeding a billion
dollar industry.

   However, it is not rich
business leaders with
expensive cars who suffer
but battlers.

   An Australian Institute
of Criminology report
said car thefts were hitting
battlers hardest.

   The report said typical
car thieves were amateurs,
usually teenage male
joyriders.

   One in every five thefts
was from car parks but
85% of cars were found by
police.

   Institute director Dr
Adam Graycar said new
models were virtually
unstealable because of
advances in security
technology.

   He said cars 15 to 17
years old were a prime
target. The rate of thefts
has doubled in the past 20
years and is worse than in
the United States, Canada
and Germany but not as
bad as in England and
Wales.

   In 1975-76, about
56,000 car thefts were
reported in Australia. Last
year, it was more than
126,000.

   In Tasmania, 2528 cars
were stolen last year
compared with 1024
stolen 20 years ago.

   Tasmania has the
lowest number of cars
stolen per 100,000
people.


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