A man who offered a potential buyer a test drive in his car was locked out the vehicle and watched in horror as it was driven away.
Cumbernauld Police are now warning locals to be on the lookout for a grey-haired, solidly built man in his late 40s with a Glasgow accent, who’s accused of committing the theft.
The incident itself took place in Gartcosh but local officers dealing with the theft cannot outrule that the man will strike again.
He had seen the car advertised on Gumtree and made his move when the owner gave him the keys.
A police spokesperson said: “Never allow a stranger to drive your car and if they want a test drive, then you, accompanied by a witness, must do the test drive for the car, as you are the insured driver.
“Be suspicious until you are satisfied that the person is genuine.
Trading standards officer Peter Fergie said that another simple guidline should be followed.
He said: ‘‘Be on your guard. If taking someone for a test run, get in the car first and before handing any keys over to the ‘test driver’.
And get the keys back in your hand before getting out too.”