November 7, 2016

Cargo thieves shift tactics, targets

Robbers target truckloads of whiskey and syrup instead of cash and electronics.

By DC Velocity Staff

Shippers have received good news and bad news about the state of global cargo theft in recent months. Reports showed a drop in U.S. incidents during the second quarter of 2016—that's the good news—but a closer look suggests that thieves are simply becoming better at targeting the type of freight they want to steal as well as expanding their horizons.

Cargo thieves have traditionally targeted compact high-value items such as cash and electronics, but lately, improved warehouse security has pushed the crooks to diversify their portfolios and start stealing a range of items, including food, alcohol, and clothing, according to Bloomberg.

Rather than lurking around DCs, cargo thieves are increasingly focused on mobile targets like trucks and trailers. Examples of recent thefts include hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of salmon in Norway, cases of whiskey in London, and truckloads of nuts around the globe, Freightwatch International reports. In another escapade, thieves snatched six pallets of maple syrup destined for Japan from a Montreal company's truck yard, making off with $150,000 in sweet merchandise.

As for the seemingly oddball assortment of items, this may be partly a reflection of the digital age. In past years, these items might have been difficult to resell, but the Internet makes it easy to locate a buyer for almost anything.

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