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Loaded Ruger, Beretta & AK-47 stolen in Nederland; police fear drug trade

NEDERLAND — Nederland Police Chief Gary Porter is asking residents not to leave firearms in their vehicles.

The plea comes less than a week after two rifles and a pistol were stolen from an unlocked vehicle in the city.

Nederland Police were called to the Chateau Nederland Apartments, 1023 Ave. B, where a person reported a Honda CRV had been burglarized.

The car was left unlocked due to the locking mechanism being broke, police said.

Stolen items were a Ruger handgun, Beretta 40 caliber Smith & Wesson Carbine and an AK47 — all loaded.

“Now we have firearms out on the street that more than likely will be traded for dope,” Porter said. “Never leave loaded firearms in your vehicle, locked or unlocked.”

And while the crime — stealing firearms from unlocked vehicles — is not new, Porter said it happens on a regular basis in Nederland and can be dangerous.

These cases could very well arm criminals with firearms needed to commit other crimes or kill someone, Porter said.

The auto burglary and theft of firearms is under investigation, and the serial numbers to the weapons have ben entered into a national database showing they have been stolen. Pawnshops will be checked.

Porter said most stolen firearms aren’t pawned but are traded for dope, adding the use of methamphetamine is on the rise.

“And that’s somebody you don’t want with a firearm, somebody’s who’s paranoid,” he said. “A lot of those on dope are strung out on meth or are using fake marijuana and (acting) schizophrenic and delusional. You don’t want them with firearms either.”