Produce Thieves Steal Nearly $200,000 Worth of Produce from H-E-B
SAN ANTONIO, TX – When you hear “theft ring” your first thought probably doesn’t involve a prolonged supermarket heist and almost $200K of lifted produce, yet here we are after authorities broke a recent distribution center crime ring.
According to mySA.com, the illicit produce operation took place in an H-E-B distribution center located in San Antonio, TX. Following a tip-off by the retailer’s corporate security detail, San Antonio police arrested three suspects for the expensive heist.
“They were stealing mainly large pallets of produce, and things of that nature,” said Sergeant Val Garcia of the San Antonio Police Department, in a statement addressed to the press. “We suspect that they were removing them from the distribution center, and they were contacting outside sources and selling them at a lower rate.”
Police estimate that the suspects, who were employed as a drivers, receivers, and truck loaders in the warehouse, stole approximately $190,000 worth of produce freight before being apprehended.
Police identified the suspects as Raul David Cervantez, 62, Albert Flores, 33, and Costa Uriel Vasquez, 26.
“According to the investigation and the follow-up procedures, we estimate [the ring operated for] a year, year-and-a-half, which is why it’s such a large sum of money,” continued Garcia.
The police worked in conjunction with H-E-B Corporate Security to identify and arrest the suspects. Garcia stated that the suspects were taken into custody at the distribution center without incident, and will face felony-level charges of organized criminal activity.
Police have stated that they do not yet know how H-E-B became alerted to the crime, or where the crime ring was selling their illegally obtained pallets of produce.
As food heists continue to be an unfortunate on-the-rise trend, AndNowUKnow will have the latest on produce crimelords and their apprehension.