Rifle man indicted in motorcycle theft ring
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
RIFLE, Colorado ” A Rifle business owner has been indicted for allegedly running a motorcycle chop shop in Rifle.
Edward Degner, 54, was indicted by the Statewide Grand Jury on a series of felonies for his role in a statewide motorcycle chop shop and theft scheme, according to the Colorado Attorney General’s Office.
Degner turned himself over to authorities at the Denver County Jail on April 21 at 10:45 a.m. He was released Thursday on $100,000 bond.
According to the indictment, Degner is suspected of committing 18 different crimes related to his operation between April 2004 and April 2007, including 14 counts of first-degree aggravated motor vehicle theft.
Degner owns Ed’s Custom Painting in Rifle and, according to the indictment, he allegedly used his business to facilitate the theft of motorcycles, engaged in a motorcycle theft, and vehicle identification number-switching scheme of Harley Davidson, American Iron Horse and other motorcycle brands.
The motorcycles that passed through Degner’s chop shop, according to the indictment, were allegedly stolen from the Denver metropolitan area and around the state.
Degner allegedly destroyed the motorcycles’ vehicle identification numbers and other identifying marks and re-stamped fraudulent VINs onto them and altered the paint jobs to conceal the original identity. He would then sell the motorcycles.
Further, Degner allegedly submitted fraudulent documents to state officials in attempts to legitimize the false VINs and hide the identity of the stolen motorcycles.
As part of the overall scheme, the forged documents falsely portrayed that the chopped motorcycles were built by Degner from secondary parts or built as homemade vehicles.
Attorneys for the state sought the indictment after investigators from the Colorado State Patrol, the Attorney General’s Office, The Colorado Bureau of Investigation, the Rifle Police Department and several other law enforcement agencies, working in conjunction discovered Degner’s motorcycle chop shop activity.
Degner is due in Denver County District Court on May 11.
Contact John Gardner: 384-9114
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