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ORC 12-3-14




Homeland Security Agent connects the dots on ORC and Middle East terrorist attacks  Scott Springer, special agent at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, spoke about retail theft at Florida State University Panama City on Tuesday. The people stealing bras and baby formula might seem relatively harmless compared to abusive spouses or drug dealers, but sometimes their ill-gotten gains reach the Middle East and wind up financing a terror attack. That might be what happened in a sprawling case investigated over several years by Special Agent Scott Springer with the Department of Homeland Security. The investigation led to dozens of arrests and seizures, and the conspirators at several points plotted to kill Springer, he said. it's not just baby formula. Organized rings of thieves steal prescription drugs, over the counter medications, razor blades, computer equipment and guns and sell through "fences," stores that pass off the stolen merchandise as legitimate. Organized thieves have been known to hijack truckloads of merchandise, Springer said, but they often operate on a smaller scale. Springer's investigation led to charges against a ringleader of an international criminal organization and the leaders of four cells with ties to Islamic radicals, he said.

Update - Baby formula ORC ring & fencing operation busted in Washington state - Video - Shipped goods overseas  Two month investigation between Safeway and Albertson's led them to 33 thefts and a fencing operation.

Lebanese man accused of trafficking infant formula in Texas
A Lebanese man has been accused of running an infant formula theft ring based in Texas. Wassim Hassan Elsaleh, also known as Sam Saleh, faced a court hearing Wednesday in Houston to secure an attorney. Federal prosecutors say the 36-year-old Elsaleh was arrested Tuesday on a charge of conspiracy to traffic in the interstate transportation of stolen goods. The six-count indictment says Elsaleh, a legal permanent resident from Lebanon who lives in Houston, ran the scam since 2012. Investigators say Elsaleh knew people who stole infant formula and other products from drug stores, then sold him the items. Elsaleh allegedly had the labels removed, added new packaging and then sold and shipped the stolen goods to out-of-state wholesalers.

ORC suspect busted at Walmart with 8 outstanding warrants - including organized retail theft in Catawba County, N.C.  A loss prevention officer at Wal-Mart followed an individual out of the store where he had allegedly removed a vacuum cleaner and a stand up mixer, valued at $578, without paying. Earl Samual Monday, 43, of 224 Western Carolina Drive in Mt. Airy was taken into custody without incident. Monday was transported to the magistrate's office, where it was discovered that there were eight outstanding warrants for him in Catawba County. Catawba County warrants for Monday included obstruction of a public officer, failure to appear, providing false information to an officer, larceny and organized retail theft.

Brotherly ORC team behind bars - More than $80,000 in stolen items recovered in Garden City, ID  Neeko M. Stone, 26, and Daniel B. Stone, 25, are each expected to be arraigned Wednesday afternoon on one count of grand theft. They were arrested Tuesday while police were investigating a stolen Airstream trailer found in a lot near North Glenwood and North Marigold streets in Garden City. According to the release, officers found the trailer through a lead from an ongoing investigation, and arrived to find that it contained "a large amount of property" reported stolen in recent thefts at several businesses. Police did not name the businesses, but photos released Wednesday show what appear to be home improvement tools and a ladder, an ATV winch, several pieces of computer equipment and a pair of binoculars, among other items. According to police, the Stones arrived at the location of the trailer while officers were still there. They were subsequently arrested at the scene.

Woman admits stealing and reselling ink cartridges to support drug habit - hitting Walmart stores  Modesto woman admitted to police that she stole computer ink cartridges from Walmart to sell them at half their cost on the street to support her crystal methamphetamine habit. Williams was observed by a loss prevention officer concealing the cartridges in her purse and leaving the store without paying for them.

Woman busted hitting three stores in Hobbs, N.M.
34-year-old Maria Carrion was arrested after being caught shoplifting from several stores. When police caught up with her, they found a bag full of stolen items from three different stores in the area.

Tualatin lingerie store says $2,400 of Stolen Merchandise Returned  A high-end lingerie store that was targeted by what police called an organized theft ring said the stolen merchandise was returned Tuesday. More than $2,400 worth of merchandise was stolen from Posh Lingerie in the Bridgeport Village Mall, Tualatin police said. Three women and two men entered the store. One person distracted the clerk while the others took items, police said. On Tuesday, the store said it received a call from the Crate & Barrel store in the mall, letting employees know that a bag containing Posh clothing had been dropped off, the store posted on its Facebook page. Most of the items stolen in the Sunday heist were in the bag, the store said.

Rochester, NH Trio face felony charges for stealing $4,000 of razor blades
Three people are facing felony charges for allegedly stealing almost $4,000 worth of razor blades from Kmart and Walmart in August. Jonathan Welch, 24, of Arundel, Maine, Darien Young, 21, and Molly Sloan, 23, were indicted on theft charges at Strafford County Superior Court last month. According to the grand jury indictments, on Aug. 5 Welch stole about $1,247 worth of razor blades from Walmart in Somersworth, and on Aug. 11 he stole about $530 worth of razor blades from Kmart in Rochester. He is accused of committing both thefts in concert with Sloan. On Aug. 7, Welch allegedly stole about $2,065 worth of razor blades from Kmart in Rochester, while acting in concert with Young.

Hair and cash stolen from Beauty Empire store in west Houston
Beauty Empire on Westheimer Road and Shadowbriar Drive is out thousands of dollars due to a smash-and-grab burglary. Houston police say it happened around 3 a.m. Wednesday when a passerby spotted four men breaking into the store and dialed 911. Surveillance video shows the crooks pull up in a white minivan and pry open the front door, busting the handle and lock.

Racine, Wisconsin teen steals $9K, 22 phones from Cricket store
A 17-year-old reportedly stole more than $9,000 in cash and 22 cellphones and cellphone accessories worth more than $10,000 on Thanksgiving from Cricket Wireless. Racine Police officers responded to a call of a burglary at about 6:35 a.m. Thursday. An officer noticed that the suspect had allegedly broken into the back entrance by smashing a window and unlatching the door's deadbolt.

ORC 12-3-14
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