DES PLAINES, Ill., Jan. 29, 2020 — Howard Handler, government affairs director for the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), issued the following statement in response to the House Consumer & Public Affairs Committee’s passage of House Bill 156. 

“While New Mexico has made significant progress in combating the auto theft rate in the past couple of years, there is still more work to put the state’s auto theft rates on par with the rest of the country. This bill will provide law enforcement one more tool to combat vehicle thefts by providing officers with the right criminal statutes to deter and prosecute these thieves and help dry up demand for stolen vehicles.

“These chop shops rely on a steady supply of stolen vehicles so the parts can be sold or used to repair or conceal other stolen vehicles.

“NICB will continue to work with lawmakers in the House and Senate to ensure reforms are put in place to protect consumers and continue to lower the state’s high auto theft rate.” 

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Anyone with information concerning insurance fraud or vehicle theft can report it anonymously by calling toll-free 800.TEL.NICB (800.835.6422) or submitting a form on our website.

About the National Insurance Crime Bureau: Headquartered in Des Plaines, Ill., the NICB is the nation's leading not-for-profit organization exclusively dedicated to combatting and preventing insurance crime through Intelligence, Analytics, and Operations; Education and Crime Prevention; and Strategy, Policy, and Advocacy. The NICB is supported by more than 1,200 property and casualty insurance companies and self-insured organizations. NICB member companies wrote over $582 billion in insurance premiums in 2021, or more than 82% of the nation's property-casualty insurance. That includes more than 96% of the nation's personal auto insurance. To learn more, visit