Police arrested Javier Tovar, 36, and Zameri Zadran, 25, both of Patterson, and Ralph Cantu, Jr., 31, of Grayson, on suspicion of owning or operating a chop shop — where stolen cars are taken apart and their parts sold — and of extortion involving a motor vehicle. The three men were booked into Stanislaus County Jail in Modesto.
Members of several police agencies joined StanCATT investigators at about 10:45 a.m. Aug. 8 to serve search warrants at two homes on Stakes Street in Grayson, based on a tip that a chop shop might exist in the area.
Police found three chopped vehicles that they suspected were stolen. In addition, agents, deputies and officers found lawn care equipment and a registration card for a Nissan pickup that was reported stolen from Patterson earlier that morning.
The stolen Nissan pickup was found during a search of the neighborhood, and police returned it and all the lawn care equipment to the owner that day.
StanCATT is a task force of officers and deputies from law enforcement agencies in Stanislaus County that focuses on car theft.