By Aaron Bracamontes / El Paso Times
Members of local law enforcement agencies that included El Paso Sheriff , El Paso Police Department, Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau
Members of local law enforcement agencies that included El Paso Sheriff's, El Paso Police Department,
Fifteen people, including two alleged Barrio Azteca members, were arrested Thursday as a result of a cargo theft ring investigation by multiple law enforcement agencies.
The arrests were made in various locations around El Paso, including a warehouse near the airport in the 20 block of Spur Drive. A tractor-trailer full of stolen flat screen TV's was seized at that location, said police spokesman Sgt. Chris Mears.
Aldo Jose Cano, 32; Sammy Tercero, 39; Michael Navarrette, 24; Fernando Morales, 38; Cindy Avalos Morales, 30; Roberto Adrian Carreon, 32; and Jose Sanchez, 28; were arrested on suspicion of engaging in organized criminal activity in connection with high value cargo thefts, officials said during a press conference today. Cano is an alleged member of the Barrio Azteca gang, Mears said.
Eight others, who had connections to the ring, were arrested on various warrants and smaller offenses.
Two men, Andres Brito, 32, and Jeffrie Castandeda, 21, are also wanted on suspicion of engaging in organized criminal activity.
The arrests were made by a task force comprising officers and agents from the El Paso Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety, FBI, El Paso County Sheriff's Office and Department of Homeland Security. The task force had been investigating the thefts since 2013, but the ring's alleged activities had been traced back to 2009.
Combating Cargo Theft in Texas
Courtesy of https://www.nicb.org
The Grand Prairie Police Department held a press conference on Thursday to discuss their attempts in combating cargo theft and property crime in the area. This event also covered the need for cargo theft legislation with stiff penalties.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo.-- A truck driver was sentenced to four and a half years in federal prison on Thursday for a cargo theft scheme.
According to a news release from the United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, 49-year-old Michael Lee Sherley of Memphis, Tennessee pleaded guilty in March to stealing a trailer in West Plains.
Sherley worked for Nu World Trucking, LLC, a company owned by his uncle, Earl Nunn. Nunn and Sherley drove semis without trailers, and went through truck stops and gas stations looking for trailers that were unattended. They would steal the trailers, and later sell of fence the items inside.
On May 11, 2013, Nunn and Sherley stole a 2000 Wabash trailer from the Snappy Mart Truck Stop in West Plains. The trailer contained a load of Green Giant canned corn. Prosecutors believe Nunn and Sherley also committed thefts in Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.
Nunn pleaded guilty in July and has not been sentenced.
By Barry Tarnef
In his latest blog, Barry Tarnef talks cargo safety and loss prevention.
Click the brief clip below to lean more. And to know more about new, trending cargo-theft schemes
New report says Chicago remains a hot spot for cargo thefts in Illinois.
Illinois, and more specifically, the Chicago area, just won’t turn loose of its reputation for being one of the truck cargo theft crime capitals in the U.S., according to a new report.
The logistics security services provider FreightWatch International says in the second quarter of this year, Illinois ranked as the state with the fifth highest recorded cargo thefts.
“Illinois is a hotspot for cargo theft activity, particularly in the Chicago area. With theft rates and average values well above the national average within several product types, it is clear that organized cargo theft is active in this area,” the report said.
Examples of this include metals, the fifth most stolen product type since 2010, which is tied with the food/drinks category for the most stolen product type in Illinois during the same time frame.
Another standout is the average value for alcohol/tobacco thefts in the state, which at $773,963 is the highest value of any product type in Illinois, and 246% higher than the national average for this product category of thefts over the same time period.
It also noted auto/parts is the fourth most stolen product type in Illinois, while nationwide it's seventh. Clothing/shoes recorded an average value of $519,000 in the state, just over twice the average value of these thefts nationwide.
While theft of the entire trailer or container is the primary theft type in Illinois, as it is across the nation, with 84.9% in Illinois and 81% nationally, other theft types, such as deceptive pickups, facility burglary and driver theft and hijacking, happen at lower frequency in Illinois than nationally.
Logistics security services provider FreightWatch International said in the second quarter of 2014, it recorded 185 truck cargo thefts in the U.S., down 4.9% from the same time a year earlier.
Of those, 179 were full truckload cargo thefts while six were last-mile courier thefts.
The highest number, 70, of these thefts occurred in April, 66 in May, and 49 in June.
The average loss value per incident during the quarter was $174,415, up 5.6% from the same time in 2013.
“The average loss-value ceiling continues to rise as the persistence and increased sophistication of organized cargo criminals sustains,” FreightWatch said in its report. “Although the overall volume of incidents has decreased, the count is well within the margin of incidents expected to be collected in the upcoming weeks.”
The product type most often stolen was food/drinks with 19% of all incidents in the U.S. during the quarter. Home/garden cargoes, the second most stolen category in the first quarter of the year, saw a 45% drop in incidents from 31 thefts to 17 thefts, to end the quarter as the fourth most stolen product type with 9% of the total. Electronics regained its position at the second place spot with 32 thefts, or 18% of the total, while the personal care category recorded triple the amount of thefts year-over-year, with 15 thefts or 8% of the total. The building/industrial sector experienced the third most thefts with 19 or 11% of total thefts.
The category of pharmaceuticals had by far the highest of any category when it came to the average value of each heist at $2.8 million, while the electronics category was ranked second at nearly $305,000.
There was a significant change as Florida and Texas both surpassed California as cargo theft hot spots. Florida had 45 thefts, or 25.1% of the total, and Texas had 29 thefts or 16.2% of the total, respectively. California recorded the third highest theft rate with 28, or 15.6% of the total, a 53.3% decline from the first quarter of the year and a 52.5% drop from the second quarter of 2013.
“The suspected cause for this drop, according to the California Highway Patrol Cargo Theft Interdiction Program Taskforce, can be attributed to cargo theft crews relocating to other areas,” said FreightWatch. “Another possible cause is that the crews kept busy during the typically slower first quarter and are now lying in wait in the second quarter,” according to the taskforce.
Rounding out the top five states with the most cargo thefts were Georgia and Illinois. These top five states accounted for nearly three-quarters of all U.S. truck cargo thefts in FreightWatch's data.
Of the incidents in which a location was recorded, unsecured parking accrued the greatest number of incidents, primarily at truckstops, with a total of 113 thefts.
Following previous trends, incidents involving theft of trailer/container were most common during the second quarter with 131 thefts, or 76% of all thefts. Theft from trailer/container consisted of 14 thefts, an increase of 40% as compared to the first quarter of the year, and was the second most prevalent theft type. In a tie for third, both deceptive pickup and facility burglary each had 10 thefts. However, the latter increased by 100% compared to second quarter of last year and 67% compared to first quarter of this year.