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A missing Ferrari 512M has been recovered by the Metropolitan Police nearly three decades after it was stolen from F1 driver Gerhard Berger.

It was one of two Ferraris reported missing after the San Marino Grand Prix in April 1995, and is thought to have been shipped to Japan shortly after its theft.

According to the Metropolitan Police, the appearance of Berger’s 512M was flagged by Ferrari in January, after it identified the stolen car during pre-purchase checks requested by a US-based buyer.

The Met’s Organised Crime Vehicle Unit then moved to prevent the export of the 512M. No arrests have yet been made and enquiries are ongoing, said the Met, with the fate of the second Ferrari still unknown.

Investigation lead PC Mike Pilbeam praised the collaborative efforts of those involved in the case, saying: “Our enquiries were painstaking and included contacting authorities from around the world.

“We worked quickly with partners including the National Crime Agency, as well as Ferrari and international car dealerships, and this collaboration was instrumental in understanding the vehicle’s background and stopping it from leaving the country.”

A Ferrari spokesperson said the car remains the property of Ferrari, and that it will soon return to Maranello.

Images supplied by the Met suggest that the car may not have led an easy life, with it wearing a non-original set of alloy wheels and an aftermarket steering wheel. It is also missing a section of dashboard trim.

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