Police discover alleged stolen boat chop shop

Man accused of stealing up to $500 thousand in boats and related trailers then selling parts

BLYTHE, Calif. - A stolen boat report in Blythe led Riverside County Sheriffs Deputies to a suspected boat chop shop operating in Lake Havasu City, Arizona.

Deputies arrested Randolph Letcher, Jr., 41, owner and operator of Jet Boats Plus after executing a search warrant at his business on Thursday.

Detectives from Colorado River Station were assigned to the case and began working together with a detective from Lake Havasu City in late February after a boat was stolen from an RV park along the Colorado River in the unincorporated area of Blythe.  

It's hull was later found abandoned in Fort Mohave, Arizona.  

It's engine and other miscellaneous parts were recovered at Jet Boats Plus.

Police say a search of Letcher, Jr.'s  home recovered a stolen jet boat, the boat's trailer, and a stolen 5th wheel trailer.  

That same evening, detectives found several more boats with altered hull identification numbers, a stolen travel trailer, a stolen boat engine, miscellaneous boats parts, suspected methamphetamine, and drug paraphernalia were seized at the business.

Letcher is now charged with conducting a boat chop shop, possessing stolen property, dangerous drugs and drug paraphernalia. 

Letcher was booked into custody by the Mohave County Sheriff's Office.

The value of the recovered stolen property from both jurisdictions is believed to be up to $500,000.

More property still needs to be identified and linked to its owners.

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