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Ford Fiesta is most stolen car in Kent – who knows how?

Ford Fiesta is most stolen car in Kent – who knows how?

CMA MD expresses dismay to Chief Constable over lack of investigation and MO data


  • Top 5 most stolen cars in Kent all Fiestas or Range Rovers

  • DVLA data shows 1,099 cars stolen in the county last year

  • CMA MD Swift astonished by lack of modus operandi data

The head of West Malling-based Claims Management & Adjusting (CMA), the UK’s oldest specialist motor insurance loss adjuster, has written to Kent Police Chief Constable, Tim Smith, regarding the soaring vehicle crime rate in the county and the lack of investigation.

Top 5 most stolen cars in Kent in 2022

1. Ford Fiesta Titanium Turbo 38

2. Land Rover Range Rover Sport 36

3. Land Rover Range Rover Sport Dynamic 30

4. Ford Fiesta Titanium X 22

5. Ford Fiesta Zetec Turbo 16

Source: Claims Management & Adjusting analysis of DVLA data

CMA managing director, Philip Swift, a former police detective, said: “Being Kent-based ourselves, we are dismayed at the worsening vehicle crime situation. Our analysis of DVLA data shows that 1,099 cars were stolen in the county last year, much higher than the 622 reported in the local press back in March. And that’s just cars. If you add in motorcycles and other vehicles the figure rises to well over 2,000.

“To try and understand the problem, we submitted some questions to Kent Police about the theft methodologies, particularly the number stolen with or without keys. The reply was: “We can’t retrieve this information by automated means”. We asked about the number of vehicles taken in connection with a burglary. Answer, again: “This is not something which can be reported on by automated means”. That’s astonishing. How can Kent Police reduce vehicle crime when they do not record the modus operandi?

“So much commentary these days is about keyless thefts, and it is starting to wear a bit thin. Of course, it happens, particularly with high value cars, but it is also a very convenient line for some. Why do we see so many claims relating to, for example, 8+ year-old Ford Fiestas? They don’t fit the ‘security compromise’ profile.

“A brilliant way to put a big dent in car crime was identified 20 years ago by the excellent Operation Igneous, a Kent initiative. It found that up to 30% of vehicle theft claims might be dishonest in some way.

“We understand from Kent Police that just 0.3% of car theft allegations were ‘no crimed’ last year – in effect cancelled due to new evidence suggesting something was awry with the initial allegation. Igneous indicated the true figure could be 100 times more. Could it be that even highly implausible accounts are simply not being investigated?

“The car has gone, any suggestion of fraud will be time-consuming, could create an unwanted crime statistic, and potentially invites a complaint; best just let the insurance company deal with it? Sadly, that seems all too common. We urgently need a more joined-up approach, and I have written to the Chief Constable about it.”

The full Freedom of Information request (FOI/00992/23) can be seen here: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/vehicle_theft_46#comment-112851

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