AgNet West has learned more about the two loads of almonds that were stolen by criminals last week. The loads were taken from Kern County and criminals used a fictitious pickup to do so. Western Agricultural Processors Association CEO Roger Isom talked with us back in 2016 about the attractiveness of ag products, especially nuts, for this style of theft.
The two recent thefts showed that criminals are getting creative with this tactic. WAPA is reporting that the loads posted to an online forum where a fake hauler signed up for the jobs. At the last minute, WAPA said the fake hauler subcontracted with a legitimate hauler to pick up the loads. Once the authorized hauler received the product and was on the road, the fake hauler rerouted the shipment to Los Angeles.
WAPA is reminding operations around the state that changes rarely happen in this process, and last-minute alterations should immediately throw up a red flag. WAPA also suggested that load tracking can be beneficial to thwart this crime and help detectives catch the thieves if it does happen.
Listen to the radio report.