Cars stolen in the US used in car bombings in Iraq. From the Boston Globe, :
WASHINGTON — The FBI’s counterterrorism unit has launched a broad investigation of US-based theft rings after discovering that some of the vehicles used in deadly car bombings in Iraq, including attacks that killed US troops and Iraqi civilians, were probably stolen in the United States, according to senior government officials.
Inspector John E. Lewis, deputy assistant director of the FBI for counterterrorism, told the Globe that the investigation hasn’t yielded any evidence that the vehicles were stolen specifically for car bombings. But there is evidence, he said, that the cars were smuggled from the United States as part of a widespread criminal network that includes terrorists and insurgents.
Cracking the car theft rings and tracing the cars could help identify the leaders of insurgent forces in Iraq and shut down at least one of the means they use to attack the US-led coalition and the Iraqi government, the officials said.
The inquiry began after coalition troops raided a bomb-making factory in Fallujah last November and found a sport utility vehicle registered in Texas that was being prepared for a bombing mission….
”It is getting a tremendous amount of attention in the US government,” said Steven Emerson, who runs the Investigative Project on Terrorism, a Washington research firm that consults for law enforcement and intelligence agencies. ”We have gotten more calls on this than anything else in the last three or four weeks. [Auto theft] is an unregulated market. Some of the proceeds are going to terrorists.”