US arrests 9 for car burglary to resell in Vietnam: reports

By Vi Vu   February 2, 2018 | 11:24 pm PT
Two were arrested as they attempted to board a flight carrying hundreds of stolen electronic devices to Vietnam last week.

Police in California have arrested nine people involved in a million-dollar scheme that shipped laptops and tablets stolen from cars to Vietnam, media reports said.

The Fremont Police Department in San Francisco said the arrests were part of their investigation into a 35 percent increase in auto theft in the Bay Area in 2017.

Two of the suspects were arrested on January 25 as they attempted to board a flight to Vietnam, carrying luggage containing more than 300 suspected stolen electronic devices.

Seven others were arrested during searches around the area, the police said in a statement earlier this week, as cited by media reports.

The statement said that during an undercover operation in December, its detectives were led to a warehouse in San Jose where they seized more than 900 stolen electronic devices including laptops and tablets in a container commonly used to ship freight overseas.

“The estimated $1 million in stolen property was intended for shipment to Vietnam,” the police said, as cited by Fremont news website Patch.

Investigators said the suspects belonged to a highly sophisticated fencing scheme who broke into parked vehicles throughout the Bay Area to steal laptops, smart phones and tablets.

The arrested range between 28 and 51 years of age. Four of them carry Vietnamese surnames.

Eight of the suspects were charged with multiple felony counts including conspiracy, possession of stolen property and an excessive takings enhancement. The ninth suspect has been released.

Police have recovered thousands of stolen tablets and laptops worth an estimated $2 million.

Investigation is still going on as they expect to make more arrests.

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