Detectives investigating the theft of a trio of high-performance cars worth more than £100,000 have issued a nation-wide appeal after several sightings were reported.
A total of three Sierra RS Cosworths were taken from the village of Longside earlier this month in what is understood to have been a targeted raid.
One of the classic machines has been recovered but two others remain unaccounted for.
Now officers have widened their investigation after an earlier appeal sparked several possible sightings across the country.
People reported seeing what might be the missing vehicles in locations including Lockerbie, Fochabers and Elgin.
One is a modified moonstone blue model with gold alloys – registration D341 JHW – and a rare black RS500 model with no modifications, registration E203 APU.
Detective Constable Richard Cooper, who is leading the investigation, said: “These are not run-of-the-mill cars and would attract attention if sold online or through collectors, in particular the black version of which only a limited number have ever been made.
“We have been liaising with other Police Scotland Divisions and other UK forces during our inquiries so far, however would ask that the public also assist us and let us know if you have information which could help.
“We also can’t rule out that the vehicles have been sold for parts, however these parts should still be identifiable to collectors or classic car enthusiasts.”
DC Cooper said the original appeal attracted “a great deal of support” from the public.
“Given the rarity of the models in question, we can’t rule out that these vehicles were stolen to order and that much thought and planning went into taking them,” he added.
“I would ask anyone with knowledge of where they might be or what may have happened to them to please get in touch by calling police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 if you would prefer to remain anonymous.”
Last night owner Stephen Morgan said: “I think it’s very positive that there have been lots of sightings of them. The support has been great.”
The thieves, who may have been watching Mr Morgan’s house while he was away, stole keys from his home and made off with the cars.
But despite smashing into the property there were no witnesses to the robbery and it is unknown how the gang removed the cars. It is understood very little fuel was kept in any of the vehicles, one of which would have needed to be “jump started”.
The raid happened overnight between Friday, July 14 and Saturday, July 15.