SHEPHERD, Texas - Authorities arrested five people after raiding an alleged chop shop run by members of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas near Shepherd, Texas.
The Liberty County Precinct 6 Constable's Office, the Montgomery County Auto Theft Task Force and the San Jacinto County Sheriff's Office were all involved in the investigation.
The raid occurred on a dirt road just north of Cleveland. It was on Our Road in San Jacinto County.
They found at least 11 stolen vehicles, in various stages of being taken apart. Investigators said at least eight of the vehicles were trucks.
"They bring it here. They have people who have tools, acetylene torches and things like. They can start cutting the vehicles immediately," said Lt. John Sanchez, of Montgomery County Sheriff's Office Auto Theft Task Force.
Sanchez said once the vehicles are cut up, what happens next varies.
"Depending on the parts of the cars, they may have buyers for them. They may scrap them. They may go overseas," said Sanchez.
C & D Scrap Metal said it works to vet each piece that comes in.
"If it looks like something's stolen, we're going to turn it away," said Dennis Laviage of C & D Scrap Metal.
Laviage added by law, all scrap metal yards are supposed to report every piece that comes in, except for aluminum cans.
All of that information goes into a database, where law enforcement can track it.
Authorities also found drugs, including cocaine and meth, and guns that they believe could be stolen.
Officials say the suspects are associated with the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas, a gang of white supremacists.
Five people were arrested including Mathew Follis, who is charged with nine counts of theft of a vehicle, drugs and a felon in possession of firearm charge.
Alexandria Hollaway is charged with nine counts of theft a vehicle, drugs and a felon in possession of a firearm charge. Shain Whitman faces two vehicle theft charges and Everett McAdams and Shasta Cole both face a drug charge.