By Maricar Cinco
Inquirer Southern Luzon
First Posted 23:36:00 03/15/2011
STA. CRUZ, Laguna, Philippines —The easiest way to report or track down a stolen vehicle is through Facebook.
An online database of vehicles or their parts, which are stolen or recovered within the Laguna province, has been created by the Laguna police in the popular social networking site Facebook.
The idea for the Facebook page of the “Laguna PNP Carnapped-Recovered-Abandoned Vehicle (CRAV) List,” was to make it easy for people to check on abandoned or recovered vehicles, Senior. Supt. Gilbert Cruz, Laguna police director, said.
During the project’s launch Tuesday, Cruz said they included photos and information, which could be as specific as the vehicle’s chassis or engine numbers.
He explained that car thieves would often take off the plate numbers aside from cannibalizing the vehicle for their parts.
Details of when and where the ‘car theft’ took place or if the case has been filed in courts are also posted online.
So far, the page, which can also be accessed by typing in “Laguna CRAV list,” has listed stolen cars and motorcycles recovered in parts of Laguna from October 2010 to the present.
“If a person’s car is stolen, he can initially post and upload photos of his vehicle, as some sort of a public ‘announcement’ in case the thief plans to use (the vehicle),” Cruz added.
He said they would also welcome reports of stolen mountain bicycles.
Cruz said car theft incidents in Laguna have gone down by 50 percent in the past six months but there have been many cases wherein cars stolen in Metro Manila were recovered in Laguna.
Among these cases are a truck hijacked in Taguig City but abandoned in San Pedro town in Laguna in November and a sports utility vehicle stolen in Quezon City in February but found in Alaminos town in Laguna.
“Soon we will include car theft incidents that happen in other Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon) provinces,” said Cruz.
He said his office would coordinate with the police Highway Patrol Group in updating the online information.
The Laguna police is the first to tap Facebook for its anti-crime program through the online pages, Abusado dot com (wherein citizens could report on erring cops) and Laguna’s Most Wanted Criminals, both of which were created in 2010.