A posse of burglars dubbed "the James Bond gang" for using BMWs and Lexuses outfitted with secret compartments and various tactics to escape police has come to Rockland County.
The group, which officials believe is based in New Jersey, is responsible for hitting at least seven Rockland homes in recent months, including five in Ramapo since November, police say. At a burglary in Orangetown in early January, thieves lifted $30,000 worth of jewelry, according to The Journal News.
The methods used in those burglaries fit those used by the gang for about 20 years.
"It is a large group," said Lt. Mark Emma of the Haverstraw Police Department. "They've been in operation long enough that maybe their children have taken up the family profession, so to speak."
The burglars strike when a home is vacant, and disable alarm systems before bursting in. They typically strike at dusk, in high-end developments, and usually show up in luxury vehicles.
"We encourage people to call if they see something suspicious, even if it looks like a car that belongs in the neighborhood," said Emma. "A higher-end car in a higher-end neighborhood, you might not notice. But if it's someone you don't know, you might want to give a call. It never hurts."
Several members of the long-running gang have been caught and sent to prison over the years. But new members are then recruited and the gang stays in operation.