By Amy Pavuk, Orlando Sentinel
Missing: a white tractor-trailer filled with $120,000 worth of Hershey's chocolate.
Volusia deputies say the 2012 Freightliner Cascadia with red and orange stripes, and its cargo, were stolen from a DeLand truck center during the weekend.
It's unclear whether the thief or thieves just wanted the vehicle — or had a mighty sweet tooth.
"We believe the thief likely wanted the truck and had no idea what the cargo was," said Volusia County Sheriff's Office spokesman Brandon Haught.
Though tractor-trailer thefts aren't common in Volusia, authorities say such heists are routine in Florida. Florida Highway Patrol Lt. Jeff Frost said thieves usually want the cargo and not the vehicle.
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Cargo that doesn't contain serial numbers — such as food and baby formula — is a popular target because the items are easy to sell without being tracked, Frost said.
That mirrors cargo-theft trends across the country.
Nationwide, 946 cargo-theft incidents were recorded last year by FreightWatch International. About 130 of those were in Florida, making the Sunshine State the second-highest in the country for thefts behind California.
The Volusia heist during the weekend fits right in with the most popular type of cargo theft: food and drink, which accounted for nearly 20 percent of all cargo theft in 2012, FreightWatch reports.
Frost said authorities frequently recover stolen tractor-trailers, but by the time the abandoned vehicle is found, the loot is gone.
Haught said deputies have no suspects and no sign of the truck, which is valued at $90,000.
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