Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Kroger, police bring down baby formula theft ring


Warren County OH Nov 23 2016 A partnership between Kroger and local law enforcement led to the sentencing of a Clermont County woman in an organized retail theft ring, the Warren County Prosecutor announced in a Monday news release.
Thuy Thu Do, 35, of Batavia, pleaded guilty to five felony counts of receiving stolen property, one of possession of criminal tools, and one misdemeanor count of receiving stolen property, Prosecutor David Fornshell said in the release.
Do was sentenced by Warren County Common Pleas Court Judge Don Oda to 30 days in jail and restitution in the amount of $14,025. Do also had to forfeit her vehicle, with value applied toward restitution, Fornshell said.
The retail theft ring involved baby formula stolen between Aug. 24, 2015 and Oct. 20, 2015.
Lebanon and Monroe police departments worked with Kroger in a public-private partnership against organized retail crime.
Police began investigating Do after they learned that she was purchasing large amounts of stolen baby formula and shipping it to Vietnam, where it would then be sold, with proceeds sent back to her, Fornshell said.
Fornshell said Do set up six different buys for stolen baby formula with undercover police.
Kroger provided the formula for the investigation, Fornshell said, and even though Do knew the formula to be stolen, she bought $14,025 worth of it from police, which was worth one-quarter of the retail value.

“Organized retail crime costs retailers billions of dollars each year, particularly with high dollar items such as baby formula, over-the-counter medications and health and beauty products,” Fornshell said in the release. “Typically, these items then find their way into black markets overseas, or locally onto tables in flea markets. Unfortunately, this ‘shrinkage,’ as it is referred to in the retail industry, costs American consumers billions of dollars each year through higher prices at the checkout counter,” Fornshell said.

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