A resident of Abu Ghosh, an Arab town west of Jerusalem, has been arrested under suspicion of stealing home-movers' trucks, together with the furniture and other belongings that they held.
The police's Lahav 433 unit conducted an undercover investigation against the suspect over several moths, after receiving complaints about theft of movers' trucks.
Police say that the man used false identification to get work as a driver in seven different moving firms. In each firm, he received a truck to drive on his first day of work, waited for it to be filled with furniture, merchandise and other belongings, and then drove it directly into the Palestinian Authority, parts of which are completely outside of Israeli control.
The thefts amounted to over 1.5 million shekels in about six months' time, detectives estimate. The suspect will be arraigned by a Rishon Letzion court on Monday.
Ever since the signing of the Oslo Accords, which created autonomous Arab-controlled zones in Judea and Samaria, Israel has been plagued by rampant car theft. The problem was worse before the construction of the security barrier between Judea and Samaria and the rest of Israel.
MK Moshe Feiglin and the Manhigut Yehudit faction in Likud recently released a report that estimated the costs to Ministry of Public Security (police) and damage from the massive car thefts at 105 billion shekels.