Stolen Air Bags Recovered, Arrests Made

October 10, 2000

Tuesday, October 10, 2000

"Stolen Air Bags Recovered, Arrests Made"

Sun Valley – On Monday, May 8, 2000, the Community Effort to Combat Auto Theft (CECAT) detectives conducted a business inspection at "Cars 4 U", located at 12440 Roscoe Boulevard. On that date DMV investigator cited Ayk Akopyan for failure to display federal trade commission labels on five of the vehicles in his sales lot. The inspection also revealed that Ayk Akopyan had a vehicle parked in front of his dealership on a public street without current registration. Ayk Akopyan, 23 years of age, was cited and his vehicle was impounded for registration fees due.

On Tuesday, September 26, 2000, the multi-agency task force of DMV and CECAT returned to conduct a follow-up inspection at "Cars 4 U." During the inspection it was learned that Ayk Akopyan and his brother Edgar Akopyan, 27 years, were co-owners of the dealership. During the inspection, component parts to six stolen vehicles were discovered including stolen air bags that had been installed in vehicles were for sale on the used car lot. It appears that the business was buying salvaged and prior stolen vehicles and rebuilding them with stolen components. Six vehicles were inspected that had been purchased by innocent buyers from this dealership. Four of the six vehicles had stolen air bags installed in them.

On Tuesday, October 10, 2000, the CECAT team served search warrants on the business and the suspects’ residences in La Crescenta. During the search, four stolen air bags were recovered from vehicles that were for sale on the lot. Ten stolen air bags were recovered from a locked storage at the residence.

The CECAT detectives are asking anyone who purchased a vehicle from this business or the suspects to immediately have the safety restraint systems inspected. It was discovered that the suspects have a pending civil action in regards to a safety system that failed to function resulting in death.

Both suspects were arrested and booked at Van Nuys jail for receiving stolen property and the bail is set at $10,000 each. For further information, contact Detective Ken Belt at 818-756-8138.

This press release was prepared by Public Information Officer Jason Lee, Media Relations Section 213-485-3586.

For Release 5:00 pm PDT
October 10, 2000