In response to a recent rise in retail theft, the California Highway Patrol’s Organized Retail Crime Task Force has seized over $1 million in stolen goods and apprehended a woman linked to a retail theft ring in Southern California. The task force conducted a raid on a warehouse and a business named The Makeup Store in Los Angeles, where they discovered the stolen cosmetics.
Brenda Yanez, 48, was arrested and charged with organized retail theft, grand theft, and receiving stolen property. The theft ring she is associated with targeted several retailers in Southern California, including CVS, Sephora, Ulta Beauty, Rite Aid, Nordstrom, and 99 Cents Only stores.
In addition to the stolen goods, the police also found tools used to disable anti-theft devices at the raided locations. Loss prevention investigators from the affected retailers were present to help identify the stolen merchandise.
Gov. Gavin Newsom announced last month that the CHP task force would be stepping up enforcement efforts in response to the increase in retail theft. The task force has made over 1,000 arrests in the first 11 months of the year, marking a 109% increase from the previous year.
The rise in theft has led many retail businesses to implement additional security measures, such as storing certain items behind plexiglass. Other law enforcement agencies in California have also been intensifying their efforts to combat retail thefts.
Read more at Los Angeles Times.