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Sheriff's Cargo Cats arrest 6, recover $690K in stolen property

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« on: January 15, 2011, 02:08:05 am »

Community Message has been issued by the LASD  - Headquarters Newsroom (SHB),
Los Angeles County Sheriff.

Friday January 14, 2011 7:49 PM PST

Sheriff's Cargo Cats arrest 6, recover $690K in stolen property from Torrance,
Vernon, Compton, Inland Empire

The theft of "Aurora" brand paper shredders in Torrance on December 17, 2010,
led to the arrests of six suspects in Vernon. 

Investigators from the sheriff's Cargo Criminal Apprehension Team (Cargo Cats),
Major Crimes Bureau, with the assistance of investigators assigned to the Cargo
Theft Interdiction Program (C-TIP), began an investigation after the theft.

The investigation led detectives to a warehouse on Thursday, January 6th,
located on the 4000 block Fruitland Avenue in the city of Vernon. While there,
investigators observed numerous men loading several pallets of Aurora brand
paper shredders into the rear of a bob-tail truck.  Investigators detained all
of the men and discovered that the shredders were those stolen from the city of

During a search of the building, sheriff's Cargo Cats investigators discovered
stolen property taken in three additional and separate cargo thefts.

Recovered were two loads of Aurora brand paper shredders, a load of infant
products stolen from a business in the city of Compton, a load of clothing
stolen from a business in the city of Vernon, and a load of miscellaneous
clothing items stolen from the Inland Empire.

The entire recovery had an estimated value of $690,000.00.

All six suspects were arrested and charged with receiving known stolen property.
They were transported to and booked at East Los Angeles Sheriff’s Station.  The
six suspects are Hispanic men from the Los Angeles area and included: Marlon
Vasquez, 49; Julian Virgen, 33; Guadalupe Lopez, 32; Noe Diaz, 43; Jose Ulloa,
38; and Jose Ramos, 68.

The case was filed in East Los Angeles Court on Monday, January 10th, and all
six suspects were held over for preliminary hearing on charges of Receiving
Stolen Property.  Their next court date is January 31, 2011.  Bail for each
suspect was set at $225,000.00.

C-TIP is a multi-jurisdictional police cargo theft task force, that includes
numerous agencies.  On the date of these arrests, peace officers from the Los
Angeles County Sheriff's Department, California Highway Patrol, Los Angeles Port
Police, and the Vernon Police Department participated.

The Cargo Criminal Apprehension Team (Cargo Cats) is a unit of the Major Crimes
Bureau of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

For more information about Cargo Cats, visit:

In January 1990, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department started a new cargo
theft investigative unit named Cargo CATs, the Cargo Criminal Apprehension Team.
Cargo CATs is assigned to the Major Crimes Bureau of the Sheriff’s Department’s
Detective Division, which oversees the team to ensure the maximum utilization of

The proactive approach the Department has taken in the past with multi
jurisdictional programs to impact the transient career criminal is the same
approach that is now being applied to the ever increasing cargo theft problem
throughout Los Angeles County and Southern California. The success demonstrated
by Cargo CATs has proven that the surveillance and investigative abilities of a
multi jurisdictional team exceed that of any single agency.

Program Objectives

-Increase arrest, prosecution and conviction of cargo thieves and their
-Establish a close working relationship with the cargo, transportation,
warehousing, and insurance industries.
-Recover and return stolen cargo to the owners.
-Reduce cargo theft property crimes.
-Reduce court costs and time by gathering quality evidence to ensure guilty
-Develop intelligence information about the stolen cargo redistribution system.
-Act as a resource for cargo theft prevention information.
-Establish a statistical reporting system to accurately reflect the cargo theft
-Enhance coordination and cooperation among federal, state, and local law
enforcement agencies, as well as cooperation and coordination between
prosecutors, law enforcement, and victims.
-Support the enactment of mandatory cargo theft reporting laws, along with
development of a statewide cargo theft database



Refer all inquiries to :

Sergeant Michael Arriaga
Major Crimes Bureau
Cargo Criminal Apprehension Team (Cargo Cats)
Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
(310) 603-3138
Sent by:
Sheriff's Headquarters Bureau (MJP)
Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
(323) 267-4800
Leroy D. Baca, Sheriff
Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
Partner to prevent or report crime by contacting your local Sheriff’s station.
Or if you wish to remain Anonymous, call “LA Crime Stoppers” by dialing
800-222-TIPS (8477), texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637),
or using the website
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