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Routine traffic stop leads to load of allegedly fake, forged ID

A van load of allegedly stolen and fake identification, as well as forgery equipment and a robbery kit, were discovered during a traffic stop by North Vancouver RCMP. A Surrey man faces charges. - RCMP
A van load of allegedly stolen and fake identification, as well as forgery equipment and a robbery kit, were discovered during a traffic stop by North Vancouver RCMP. A Surrey man faces charges.
— image credit: RCMP

A routine traffic stop in North Vancouver resulted in the seizure of hundreds of pieces of allegedly stolen and fake ID, and a criminal charge for a Surrey man.

When North Vancouver RCMP pulled a rental cube van over Jan. 15, the driver produced identification in a name that wasn't his.

Further inspection of the van uncovered bags of stolen mail, various pieces of ID, including passports, driver's licenses, social insurance cards, credit cards and what police called "sophisticated documentation/forgery equipment."

Mounties estimate there are more than 500 potential victims linked to the seized items.

A "robbery kit," containing zap straps, a balaclava, pepper spray, handcuffs and knives were also found in the van.

Police said the investigation revealed the allegedly stolen property came from break and enters and theft from vehicles and mailboxes throughout the Lower Mainland.

Charged is 27-year-old Benjamin Best, who faces one count of personation. He remains in custody and his next court appearance is scheduled for Feb. 11.

“This is a complex investigation with thousands of pieces of evidence, requiring detailed examination and documentation,” said North Vancouver RCMP Cpl. Richard De Jong. “Police are reminding all victims of stolen identification and mail to notify their local police agency of their loss.”

Police say Best will likely face further charges related to the investigation.

For information on identity theft, click here.

 

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