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Cops Pop Pompano Chop Shop

Childhood ambitions gone terribly awry: That's the theme of today's Broward Sheriff's Office news release, which begins:

An automotive engineering student who dreamed of someday building race cars was arrested this week by Broward Sheriff's Office detectives for operating a chop shop in Pompano Beach.

On Sept. 7, a BSO deputy in Oakland Park saw Delano Henry, 22, driving a stolen Subaru from Oakland Park to a warehouse in Pompano Beach. The following day, detectives found pieces of high-end, foreign sports cars and various tools used to dismantle vehicles. They also found a .45-caliber semi-automatic handgun hidden behind a piece of wood in a wall.

After the jump, investigators offer a theory about how long the chop shop operated and for how long.

Detectives believe Henry has been operating the shop for at least a year and that he didn't act alone. He began renting four bays at the warehouse in July 2008. When detectives searched it, they found several stolen vehicles, including a portion of a stolen Acura NSX, three Honda S2000s, a Nissan 360Z, and a stolen engine from another car. All had been reported stolen to various South Florida police departments in the past year.

Henry faces felony charges of operating a chop shop, grand theft, five counts of grand theft auto, three counts of possession of alter motor vehicle components and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. The investigation is ongoing.

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Thomas Francis

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