Illicit association for… plant theft: highway brings fox-tailed thieves to justice

In a truck and in broad daylight. This is how a couple of thieves were discovered who could not think of anything better than stealing a dozen “fox tails” from the Costanera Norte. The plants, which adorn the highway, are valued at 3,500 pesos on the informal market. However, from the concessionaire they assure that the complaints “are not related to the amount of the stolen species, but rather with the damage to the safety of the users that is caused by their theft.”

Bored with the repeated robberies and seeking that the law be applied “in the most rigorous way”, even asking to consider the crime of illicit association, the North Coastal Concessionaire decided to bring to justice two subjects who last Tuesday, November 1, stole ornamental plants from the road valued at… $3,500 each.

With evidence in hand, the company decided to file a criminal complaint with the Fourth Guarantee Court of Santiago. The legal action did not take long to bear fruit: today both involved are listed as accused and are subject to precautionary measures.

Despite the fact that the value of the objects stolen on this occasion is lower, the company defends the judicial presentation, arguing that these are key elements for highway safety.

Indeed, the concessionaire warns in the letter, it is necessary for the court to apply sanctions to those involved so that they serve as a “social example”.

fox tails

At 1:22 p.m. last Tuesday, Costanera Norte received the first alert. A Nissan Kicks had stopped suspiciously at mile 7.4 on the southbound road.

The notice came from a citizen security patrol of the Municipality of Vitacura. The cameras quickly made it possible to quickly confirm the purpose for which the vehicle had been parked on the berm.

The images that were received at the motorway camera center were clear. Three subjects had gotten out of the car for the sole purpose of cutting off and taking home some of the “Fox Tails.”ornamental plants located on the shore.

Along with alerting the concessionaire, the municipal security personnel contacted Carabineros. This allowed the arrest of two of the individuals: Matías González and Sebastián Pérez, who were taken to the 37th Vitacura Police Station.

“Illicit association”

According to what was reported to the court by the firm behind the concession of the route that crosses the Metropolitan region from east to west, the resale of this type of plant in the informal market reaches a value of $3,500 each.

Despite being a smaller amount, the complaint emphasizes the security risk posed by this type of action and the need to set a precedent for this type of theft.

In addition, the document requests the Public Ministry to consider in the investigation of the facts that those who are responsible “they act or acted under the crime of illicit association (…) unless said situation considers it only as an aggravating circumstance”.

“It is necessary to point out that, with the negligent, culpable and criminal actions of these two individuals, not only have their own lives and physical integrity been put at risk, but also that of the users of the concession highway. The foregoing, since when stopping on the highway berm it can cause an accident that affects other road users,” the document also reads.

Likewise, the complainant asked to take into account the taking of a statement from the woman who appears as the owner of the car so that she could report whether it was she or a third party who was driving the car on the day the crime was committed.

More than 200 similar actions

The complaint filed by Costanera Norte is part of a company strategy to stop this and other similar types of thefts of which they are constantly victims, as explained.

Required by BBCL Investiga, they indicated that only so far in 2022 they have filed around 200 similar legal actions for thefts suffered in the infrastructure.

As detailed, periodically they have to deal with the theft of different security elements such as perimeter mesh, cables, fire extinguishers, ornamental plants and others.

“These complaints filed by the Concessionaire Company do not relate to the amount of the stolen species, but rather with the damage to the security of users that is caused by their theft. Thus, in the particular case of the theft of ornamental plants (fox tails), these constitute, as the complaint indicates, live fences or natural barriers that prevent the passage of people or animals to the road, “they underline.

The formalization of those involved took place on Wednesday, November 2, an instance where the guarantee judge left them subject to the precautionary measure prohibiting them from approaching the scene of the events.

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Illicit association for… plant theft: highway brings fox-tailed thieves to justice

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