A San Francisco teen was slapped with 20 felony charges for allegedly stealing more than 100 bikes and selling them on Craigslist and at Oakland flea markets.
The District Attorney's Office says that 18-year-old Irving Morales-Sanchez appeared in court today, where he pleaded not guilty to the charges. He was arrested in May after police found 114 stolen bikes in his possession.
His bail was set at $75,000. Needless to say, District Attorney George Gascón was rather delighted to file these charges.
"This individual was a big seller of stolen bicycles and fueling thieves to steal bicycles for a quick buck," Gascón said in a statement released today. "By prosecuting the defendant, we are dealing a blow to the marketplace of stolen bicycles."
In May, some victims notified police, saying they had spotted their stolen bikes on Craigslist. After that, police got a warrant to search Sanchez's home on the 200 block of Charter Oak Avenue, where they found eight stolen bikes. Upon further investigation, police learned the suspect had two storage lockers in Oakland, both filled with a total of 106 bicycles, as well as 80 bike
ties and a bicycle frame. The estimated value of all the stolen bikes was in excess of $10,000, according to the DA.
Morales-Sanchez was arrested on May 17 and booked into San Francisco County Jail.
Since then, police have been trying to reunite cyclists with their missing bikes. Police created a photo bank of the stolen bikes, which you can find here. So far 20 bikes have been identified by 19 victims.
If you do spot your bike, e-mail Ingleside Police Station at SFPDInglesideStation@sfgov.org.Be prepared to show proof the bike is yours.
Meanwhile, the Bike Coalition is offering bike education classes, which includes information on how to properly lock your bike. The Coalition also reminds all you happy cyclists out there to secure your bikes to a U-lock -- a cable lock is not enough. You can get more information on securing your bike here.
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