A second southeast Michigan police agency in as many weeks is warning about Chilean gangs that are burglarizing luxury homes, stealing millions in cash, jewelry and other expensive items.

“We’re confident it’s a group organized out of South America and they’re here targeting those high-end homes,” Northville Township Deputy Police Chief Matthew Mackenzie told WXYZ. “It’s nationwide, it’s not just southeast Michigan or this region. It’s California, New York, it’s all over the country.”

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Northville Township Police on Friday highlighted several recent incidents in Wayne County involving highly organized groups of three to five individuals, which investigators believe are trained in boot camps in South America before they come to the U.S. on visas.

The Friday alert came about a week after Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard issued a warning about similar break-ins there, the latest in a series of crimes that date back to last year. Those crimes, Bouchard said, are made possible by a Visa Waiver Program the sheriff is urging Congress to halt.

“They are super well-trained when they get here, highly organized. They look like ninjas, they’re all masked up, gloves; they each have a backpack with their particular set of tools for their job in the burglary,” Bouchard told Fox 2. “All of the intelligence estimates – just from Chile – we have 100-plus teams in operation right now in America – teams of four to six.”

“What we encourage Washington to do, is stop the Visa Waiver Program right now for Chile. That doesn’t mean they can’t visit but they just have to get a regular Visa which comes with a little more scrutiny,” he said.

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Northville resident Thomas Close told WXYZ the recent string of break-ins is only the latest, pointing to a nearby home that was targeted last year. In February, Close said trucks were spotted in his neighborhood capturing video of homes.

“They’ll drive through our small subdivision with their windows partially down filming with their video camera,” he said. “In our case, they tend to come by and case the house just before they attempt the robbery.”

Mackenzie said the thieves have lifted hundreds of thousands worth of cash and items from at least five Northville homes over the last year, while Bouchard estimates millions more in losses in Oakland County.

The break-ins typically involve large upscale homes that back up to woods, a golf course or other “areas with little, or no observation from neighbors,” Bouchard said. In some cases, the thieves have used jammers on wireless alarm systems to prevent automatic notifications to authorities.

The recent uptick in burglaries follows a short-lived lull after one group of Chileans were arrested in December for targeting retail stores and homes in metro Detroit. Between the break-ins in Oakland County and those handled by Bloomfield Police, at least a half-dozen locations have been targeted in the county in recent weeks, Bouchard said.

“(In the) back of our minds, we knew as a police department that they would be back in our area,” Bloomfield Township Police officer Nick Soley told Fox 2. “It’s more than just the property that’s being stolen. They are terrorizing, basically, Oakland County.”

Authorities are urging residents to remain vigilant, report any suspicious activity, and to eliminate any signs a home may be unoccupied, such as mail piling up, or garbage cans that remain by the road. They also suggest against social media posts about leaving town.

“Our guess is they don’t want to encounter a homeowner so they want to watch the house, make sure no one is home, maybe they’re on vacation and then that’s the home they want to target,” Mackenzie said. “We want to have high visibility patrols… These people want to work in the dark, so if we can saturate our subdivisions during the nighttime we can deter that from happening here.”

More than 30 local police agencies including the Southeast Michigan Collaborate Arrest and Prosecute team formed a task force in December to address dozens of the burglaries in the region over the four months prior.

Authorities in other states are taking action, as well.

Police in Scottsdale, Arizona are dealing with 131 burglaries there that have put locals on edge.

“We moved here seven years ago from New York City – and we don’t feel safe now,” one homeowner told the Ahwatukee Foothills News. “I sleep with my gun next to me now.”

Others have been arrested in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. In December Claudeo Alexander Fuentez-Soto, 25, “a Chilean national who was in possession of false identification from Venezuela” was apprehended alongside others from Chile: Alvaro Javier Ganin Ganin, 36, Jorge Fabrizeo Sepulveda Alvarez, 34, Vaster Miller Guajardo Pedrero, 31, Nicolas Andres Matus Lucero, 29, according to NBC 10.