According to the Los Angeles Daily News, L.A. police detectives are seeking the public’s help for information on a string of cargo thefts by fraudulent trucking companies.
Authorities say millions of dollars in cargo have been lost due to the crime they’re calling “fictitious pickups.”
The thieves are stealing the identity of legitimate carriers. They say the crime is pulled off when a truck driver arrives to pick up a load and presents counterfeit documentation to the shipper.
“This is a big problem in Los Angeles and is expanding across the United States,” Detective Marc Zavala of the LAPD Commercial Crimes Division, Cargo-Hijack Unit told the Daily News. “They steal everything from TVs to pounds of walnuts and almonds to cucumbers.”
Detective Zavala told the Daily News that they receive several calls each week from cargo companies that have fallen victim to the thieves.
The detectives say the suspects are believed to be part of an Armenian organized-theft group that targets companies across the U.S.
“It’s big in the Van Nuys area, Ontario, Inland Empire, Rancho Cucamonga, and in the Midwest,” Zavala said.
If you have any information about this crime, you’re asked to call the LAPD Commercial Crimes Division-Hijack Unit at 818-832-7510 or 818-832-7508. During non-business hours or on weekends, calls may be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7. You may remain anonymous.