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Three people have been arrested in a car theft ring that operated out of a North Side store, BCSO says

Three people have been arrested in a car theft ring that operated out of a North Side store, BCSO says

San Antonio — Three men were recently arrested after Bexar County deputies said they conspired with three other suspects in a car theft ring operating out of a North Side convenience store.

Jorge Santibanez, 33, Miguel Santibanez, 19, and Ethan Soto, 23, are charged with organized crime, according to records at the Bexar County Jail Program.

Miguel Santibanez is also charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle, and Soto is also charged with theft of a vehicle valued at $30,000 to $150,000.

Arrest warrant affidavits state that BCSO began investigating the suspects because they were allegedly stealing the vehicles, removing their engines and installing them in other vehicles that were later sold.

The investigation led deputies to a property in the 1000 block of Bass Road, near San Pedro Street, on February 27.

Deputies said they found seven stolen cars on the property that Miguel Santibañez claimed to be the owner.

Several stolen auto parts were also identified, deputies said. One of the vehicles, a gray Dodge Charger, was in the process of being assembled, and that vehicle’s engine had been stolen, according to investigators.

The affidavit states that George Santibanez and Ethan Soto were associated with the property, and George Santibanez posted videos and photos from inside the store on social media. Phone records revealed that George Santibanez mentioned he worked at the store in an Instagram message, the affidavit states.

Authorities stopped Soto on February 26 because he was driving a car with a tampered VIN, deputies said. This VIN number belonged to a Dodge Charger that was stolen, and the PCM – one of the car’s main computer systems – was also stolen.

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Deputies later discovered that Soto had been shot while stealing a car in 2023.

One of the suspects in the case, who has not been arrested in Bexar County, posted several “trade-in” Chrysler and Dodge vehicles for sale on Instagram for half the value they were worth.

Deputies said Miguel Santibanez, Jorge Santibanez, Ethan Soto and three others conspired with each other in the operation.

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