Breaking News in the Industry: January 11, 2019

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Suspect brandishes gun at LP

Police in Gwinnett County, Georgia say a minor shoplifting incident took a dangerous and unexpected turn when the suspect pulled a gun on store loss prevention associates. Police body camera video showed his arrest just moments later. Police said Anthony Robinson stole a phone case from a Walmart in Duluth.

When officers responded to a report of shots along Pleasant Hill Road, they said they had no idea what they would encounter. “We didn’t know if he was going to use it on us or what not,” said officer Ted Sadowki. “It’s a dangerous situation, especially when you bring a gun into any type of situation.” Robinson is facing charges of shoplifting and reckless conduct. He’s currently out of jail on bond.   [Source: WSB-TV2 Atlanta]

Serial shoplifter busted

A Massachusetts woman with six outstanding court warrants — nearly all of which include shoplifting and theft — was arrested along with an accomplice for shoplifting nearly $2,000 worth of merchandise from the Target store, police said. Police say 31-year-old Amanda Manning, had warrants issued from Taunton District Court for shoplifting, larceny over $1,200 and drug possession.Both Manning and her 32-year-old alleged accomplice, Casie Svedine, were arrested and charged with shoplifting, a subsequent charge, and conspiracy to commit a crime.

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Police said they arrested the two after responding Tuesday afternoon to a report of two females “actively shoplifting numerous items from the electronics department.” Manning allegedly told cops she was shoplifting because she was “dope sick” and needed money to supplement her drug addiction.

A Target loss prevention associate told police the items had a combined retail value of more than $1,900. Items that were concealed under the sweaters of Manning and Svedine, police said, included two baby monitors; three Amazon Fire TV Sticks; a Nintendo controller; and a Fitbit fitness band. Police said members of the loss prevention team made it clear that both women would be “trespassed”, meaning that they no longer will be allowed to come onto the store’s premises.  [Source: South Coast Now]

Tackling cargo theft by reducing operational vulnerability

Since the time of horse-drawn wagons and steam-powered locomotives, the freight hauling industry has had to contend with cargo thieves, who over time have become bolder and frustratingly better organized. It is hard to put a number on cargo theft in the U.S. because not all of the stolen freight gets reported, but it is expected to be north of $15 billion every year in lost revenue.

Thieves come in all shapes and sizes – lone wolves, organized gangs, and even international crime syndicates. With cargo theft being relatively low-risk compared to comparable crimes like breaking into buildings, it is crucial to have deterrents in place that can stop cargo thieves on their tracks.

Apart from the value of the stolen freight, there are un-quantifiable issues like the hours wasted due to disruption of delivery and being answerable to the shipper. Companies also take a hit on their reputation, and have to cooperate with lengthy police investigations and fill out insurance-related questionnaires.

Nonetheless, there are many ways that fleets can proactively work to make their cargo more secure. One of the first steps to cargo safety is training personnel to understand risks and ways to mitigate them. Drivers should be provided security training, in which they are educated on protecting the trailers from hijacking and theft, and companies should have a mechanism in place through which drivers can be in constant contact with the back office.   [Source: Freight Waves]

Counterfeit ring nabbed using fake credit cards

An alleged counterfeiting ring in Connecticut was stopped by Trumbull Police as they fled the Trumbull Mall after attempting to use fraudulent credit cards to make several purchases. The ring was busted Wednesday after a Trumbull officer patrolling the mall’s parking lot observed three men walking together acting suspiciously, said Trumbull Police Capt. Keith Golding.

The men split up and entered the mall after spotting the marked patrol car. A short time later, the same men exited the mall and quickly made their way to a waiting vehicle parked near the exit, he said. As this was occurring, the loss prevention manager for the Apple Store inside the mall, approached the officer and told him that the three men had just tried to use fraudulent credit cards to make several large purchases, Golding added.

The officer stopped the vehicle it as it exited onto Main Street. Driving the vehicle was Shaheen Hopson 22, of the Bronx, along with the three suspects inside the vehicle and were identified by the store manager. A search of the vehicle and its passengers found nearly two dozen fraudulent credit cards, two electronic credit card readers and a quantity of counterfeit cash, Golding said. Each was held on $100,000 bond and are scheduled to appear in court on January 16.   [Source: Westport Daily Voice]

Two charged in attempts to post bond with funny money

Two women were recently charged in separate incidents for trying to pay a criminal bond with counterfeit money. According to a criminal complaint filed in Logan County Magistrate Court, Nancy Helen McKinney, 46, entered the Logan County Courthouse and handed a counterfeit $100 bill to the magistrate clerk’s office in an attempt to pay an individual’s bond. McKinney was charged with felony counterfeiting and arraigned on a $5,000 bond by Magistrate Dwight Williamson.

Denise Helen West, 46, reportedly attempted a similar crime. According to another criminal complaint, West attempted to post a bond at the courthouse for Heather Plumley with a counterfeit $100 bill. The complaint says the counterfeit bill had “Chinese type writing” on both sides. Officer Jonathan Ziegler with the Logan Police Department was in magistrate court for a hearing on Plumley when courthouse staff told him about West’s attempt. West was arrested and also charged with felony counterfeiting. She was arraigned by Williamson on a $50,000 bond.   [Source: The Herald-Dispatch]

EU could fine Marriott $8.8B for data breach

The Marriott data breach is under investigation in several countries, where the hotel and resorts giant has a presence. In the EU Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) leads the investigation. It is the UK independent body set up to uphold information rights. Local authorities of each country are interested to participate as ‘supervisory authorities’ in the cooperative framework of GDPR.

According to ICO as the investigation is at an early stage no official attribution has been made. Given that the global annual revenue of the company reached $22.89 billion in 2017 and the strictest fine could amount to 4% of it, the sanctions imposed by the EU could be translated to $8.8 billion. This will probably surpass the amount of $3.5 billion, analysts initially estimated some days after the incident went public.

In addition, it is possible that some clients may take legal action against the company and claim damages which will elevate the cost of the breach even higher. In the worst case scenario if it is proved that the company was fully aware of the hacker attack well before it was revealed, then the Securities and Exchange Commission of the US will pursue a prosecution against Marriott on the grounds of causing serious losses for its investors.  [Source: Forbes]

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