Feds: Men Stole $1.6M of Goods from Dozens of UPS Warehouses - Modern Distribution Management

Log In

Feds: Men Stole $1.6M of Goods from Dozens of UPS Warehouses

The alleged conspiracy stretched from January 2021 to April 2023.
Thief hands with gloves steal a box of goods in a warehouse in the dark. Concept of problems with theft of goods and postal parcels

According to a criminal complaint filed Oct. 17, federal prosecutors have accused four men of breaking into five UPS warehouses across the U.S. between January 2021 to April 2023 and stealing $1.6 million worth of “high-value” items, particularly electronics.

The complaint, filed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, said the men broke into 55 UPS facilities, including facilities in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Indiana and Rhode Island, along with other individuals in the thefts.

Prosecutors said the more than two-year string of burglaries exhibited a common pattern:

  • They would usually occur on weekends, with the group breaking into the targeted UPS facility overnight on Saturday into Sunday
  • The group would operate in teams of four to six, dressed in all black and wearing balaclavas or other face or head coverings
  • The group would break into these facilities by breaking the window of the loading bay door or prying the door up so that a conspirator “smaller in stature” could squeeze through
  • Once inside, the group would look for packages marked with “lithium-ion battery” warnings, which denote a high-value electronic device is likely inside
  • The men would flee on foot or vehicle when law enforcement arrived

Prosecutors said that, if convicted, the four accused men could face up to five years of prison each and a $250,000 fine or “twice the amount of money involved in the offense, whichever is greater.

Warehouse Theft Stats

According to cargo theft prevention and recovery solutions provider CargoNet, there were 1,778 reported supply chain theft incidents reported in 2022 in the U.S. and Canada, up 15% from 2021. Warehouses/distribution centers were the top target location type.

The three most populated states in the U.S. — California, Texas and Florida — were the three most targeted states in 2022 for these incidents, representing 46% of all of that year’s reported theft.

In all, those theft incidents accounted for $223 million in lost value, according to CargoNet data.

More recently, CargoNet recorded 582 supply chain thefts across the U.S. and Canada during 2023’s second quarter — a 57% spike year-over-year. Those thefts accounted for over $44 million in shipment value. California, Texas and Illinois were the most targeted states in 2Q, accounting for 51% of all recorded theft, and warehouses/DCs remained the top targeted location type.

Note: Supply chain/cargo theft is not officially tracked by the U.S. or Canada government.

Related Posts

Share this article

About the Author
Recommended Reading
Leave a Reply

Leave a Comment

Sign Up for the MDM Update Newsletter

The MDM update newsletter is your best source for news and trends in the wholesale distribution industry.

Get the MDM Update Newsletter

Wholesale distribution news and trends delivered right to your inbox.

Sign-up for our free newsletter and get:

  • Up-to-date news in a quick-to-read format
  • Free access to webcasts, podcasts and live events
  • Exclusive whitepapers, research and reports
  • And more!


articles left

Want more Premium content from MDM?

Subscribe today and get:

  • New issues twice each month
  • Unlimited access to mdm.com, including 10+ years of archived data
  • Current trends analysis, market data and economic updates
  • Discounts on select store products and events

Subscribe to continue reading

MDM Premium Subscribers get:

  • Unlimited access to MDM.com
  • 1 year digital subscription, with new issues twice a month
  • Trends analysis, market data and quarterly economic updates
  • Deals on select store products and events



You have one free article remaining

Subscribe to MDM Premium to get unlimited access. Your subscription includes:

  • Two new issues a month
  • Access to 10+ years of archived data on mdm.com
  • Quarterly economic updates, trends analysis and market data
  • Store and event discounts

To continue reading, you must be an MDM Premium subscriber.

Join other distribution executives who use MDM Premium to optimize their business. Our insights and analysis help you enter the right new markets, turbocharge your sales and marketing efforts, identify business partners that help you scale, and stay ahead of your competitors.

Register for full access

By providing your email, you agree to receive announcements from us and our partners for our newsletter, events, surveys, and partner resources per MDM Terms & Conditions. You can withdraw consent at any time.

Learn More about Custom Reports

Request a Market Prospector Demo

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.