ARSONISTS and would-be thieves have destroyed three cars and damaged four others at a Wodonga car yard.
The arson squad yesterday deemed the blaze deliberate, the fire from one vehicle spreading to two cars parked nearby, with four more damaged by heat and flames.
The damage bill has been estimated at close to $70,000.
Police later found four tyres, removed from the Holden Senator initially torched in the attack, hidden under bushes in a back street connected to the car yard.
Detective Leading Sen-Constable Aaron Ibbott said it was the latest in a spate of thefts and petty vandalism at the Melbourne Road Suzuki and Skoda dealership.
Police believe the same people are responsible.
“There have been a number of incidents at the car yard in recent months,” Sen-Constable Ibbott said.
“On Saturday, there was a hole cut in a wire fence at the back of the property to gain access to the yard.
“They have removed the HSV tyres from the car and stashed them under some bushes in Trafalgar Street, that runs behind the car yard.
“The tyres were found by police soon after the fire started.”
Sen-Constable Ibbott said police were eager to talk to three men seen near the car yard about 2.30am on Saturday.
“There were three men in a blue Commodore, registered in NSW, who were seen acting suspiciously,” he said.
“They were spoken to by police at the time.
“We would be keen to hear from anyone with additional information or who knows the whereabouts of that vehicle and its occupants.”