A CAR stolen from a dealership in Westhoughton at the weekend was later used in a ram raid, claims the owner.

Jason McCarthy, owner of the Westhoughton Motor Company on Chorley Road, said that at 11.10pm on Saturday, November 16, a white Transit van arrived outside the gates of his dealership.

He says that CCTV footage shows a man jump over a fence and break in to one of the company’s cars.

The car was a blue Volkswagen Golf with the registration number CX13LGG.

Once the car was started, the person behind the wheel attempted to drive it through the fence but got it stuck.

It took another 30 minutes before they were able to make their getaway, after using their van to pull the car out.

Mr McCarthy, 23, who opened the company two and a half years ago, said: “They got into the car without keys, so they must have programmed their own.

“They rammed the fence down but there’s a bit of a drop and quite tricky terrain so they got stuck.

“It would have been very loud and people would still be up. You wouldn’t expect that sort of noise and you’d think people would hear, but apparently not.”

The car was then later used in a ram raid on Corporation Street in the town centre, Mr McCarthy said the police told him.

The raid was in the early hours of Sunday, at around 4.40am on November 17.

He added: “My question to anyone reading this would be; have you seen anything? The front and back of the car would be damaged from the theft and the ram raid so it would be easily identifiable.

“I’m 23 years old, I have two kids and I’m just trying to make a living. Then you have scruffs doing things like this.”

This is the second time a car has been stolen from Mr McCarthy's dealership.

However, due to the circumstances in which the car was stolen this time around, Mr McCarthy believes he has a better chance of recovering and finding it.

He said: “The last car was probably stolen for parts and I never saw it again. But this one was used for a specific purpose - the ram-raid - and the police are hoping they can find the car. It might be around a back street or somewhere so I hope people can keep an eye out for it.”

Anyone with any information on the stolen car or ram-raid should contact the police. Alternatively, the anonymous charity CrimeStoppers can be contacted on 0800 555 111.