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3 Chilean Men Arrested For Breaking Into Cars In Simi Valley

SIMI VALLEY (CBSLA) – Three men visiting the U.S. from Chile were arrested Wednesday on allegations they broke into several vehicles near hiking trails in Simi Valley by jamming the signals from the victims' key fobs.

Jonathan Garay, 29, Eduardo Queralto, 22 and Kevin Castillo, 22, were captured during a traffic stop and charged with burglary and conspiracy, Simi Valley police report.

Three Chilean Visitors Arrested For Breaking Into Cars In Simi Valley
Three men from Chile were arrested in Simi Valley, Calif., on charges of breaking into cars. April 10, 2019. (Simi Valley Police Department)

A multi-agency surveillance operation culminated in their arrests after investigators observed the suspects driving a 2019 Ford Escape to secluded areas, such as hiking trailheads, where they would commit their burglaries, police said.

The suspects would use an electronic jamming device which interrupts the signal from the victim's key fob, preventing the car from being locked remotely, police said. Victims would press the lock button as they were walking away from the car and assume that it had locked, when in fact it hadn't.

The suspects were in the U.S. on visas, police said. It's unclear how long they had planned to stay or what their purpose was for being here.

Police advise drivers to ensure the lights and horn sound when they use a key fob to confirm the car has locked.

California Highway Patrol assisted in the operation.

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