PITTSBURGH A Florida man
has been accused of three felonies for his alleged role in a
cargo theft scheme that netted more than $836,000 in scrap
metal and finished steel products.
OmniSource Corp. and Rea Magnet
Wire Co. Inc., both of Fort Wayne, Ind., were the victims of
sophisticated heists in which criminals posed as legitimate
truckers, picked up cargoes and diverted them from their final
destinations, according to law enforcement officials.
OmniSource lost some $540,414
worth of material, including 20,000 pounds of No. 1 heavy
copper chops, 44,000 pounds of bare bright copper chops and
44,000 pounds of tin-plated punching/red brass borings,
according to records obtained from Indianas Allen County
Superior Court. Rea Magnet lost about $296,413 worth of
material, including 78,685 pounds of magnetic wire. The stolen
material has yet to be located.
Roberto M. Gonzalez of Hialeah,
Fla., has been accused of corrupt business influence and
two counts of theft in excess of $100,000. Gonzalez is believed
to be part of a larger organization that conducted such heists
throughout the country between late October and early December
2012, according to investigators. Two other men are being
The Fort Wayne police became
involved when they were asked to investigate OmniSource cargo
thefts in November. At the time, it was revealed that a similar
event occurred at OmniSources Toledo, Ohio, facility (
amm.com, Nov. 12).
Rea Magnet contacted police the
following month to report two cargo thefts. Investigators
watching video footage quickly recognized that the same
tractorsa blue and white Freightliner and a customized
yellow Kenworth truckhad been used in both incidents.
The Fort Wayne crime lab
analyzed one of the shipping documents and lifted the
fingerprints of suspects Dairan Calderon and Yasmel
Encarnacion, who are now being pursued. OmniSource employees
were able to identify the two from photographs.
Neither OmniSource nor Rea
Magnet could be reached for comment.