VANCOUVER - For a decade, police in B.C. have used bait cars and other vehicles to catch auto thieves, now they're planting bait property inside vehicles to nab smash-and-grab crooks.
The bait car program, in which vehicles are rigged with video cameras, GPS systems and remote ignition locks, has been in use in B.C. since 2003, and police say it has helped reduce auto theft by 73 per cent during that time.
Now, they're moving to tackle thieves who break into cars and steal everything from wallets to toolboxes.
Police say GPS devices planted in property left in bait vehicles will help lead them to the thieves.
The top items stolen from vehicles include smartphones, laptops, tools, credit cards, ID and stereo equipment.
The move to bait property comes after police noticed a slight increase in thefts from vehicles in B.C. in the last four months of 2012.
Police also released a list of the province's top 10 car thieves:
Richard James Mantler
WANTED BY: Vancouver PD and Langley RCMP AGE: 41 WARRANTS: Vancouver PD – Possession of a stolen vehicle, flight from police, dangerous driving, driving while disqualified and leaving the scene of an accident; Langley RCMP – Assault
Cory Todd Siebolts
AGE: 25 WANTED BY: Kamloops RCMP and Edmonton PD WARRANT: Theft, possession of stolen property, dangerous operation of a vehicle, personation, breach of recognizance and possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking
Ian Gerald Mountain
AGE: 27 WANTED BY: Upper Fraser Valley RCMP WARRANT: Possession of stolen property, breach of probation, breach of recognizance
Lisa Karon Shaw
AGE: 42 WANTED BY: IMPACT and Surrey RCMP WARRANT: Breach probation, driving while prohibited
Graham Arthur Hunter
AGE: 32 WANTED BY: Surrey RCMP WARRANT: Breach of probation
Patrick Shane McCracken
AGE: 30 WANTED BY: White Rock RCMP & Surrey RCMP WARRANT: Possession of stolen property, trespass by night, possession of prohibited weapon
Robert Fred Basil
AGE: 33 WANTED BY: Prince George RCMP WARRANT: Possession of prohibited weapon
Anthony Nicholas Baird
AGE: 19 WANTED BY: Coquitlam RCMP WARRANT: Breach of probation
William John Walsh
AGE: 31 WANTED BY: Surrey RCMP WARRANT: 3 warrants for breach of recognizance
Travis Christopher McKay
AGE: 29 WANTED BY: Delta Police Department & Surrey RCMP WARRANT: Possession of stolen property, possession of B&E tools and two counts of breach of recognizance