FBI investigates pharmaceuticals theft ring in Pennsylvania

| Friday, September 09, 2005

The FBI has been called in to investigate the theft of three tractor-trailers loaded with nonprescription pain medication in Pennsylvania in the last three months.

All three thefts occurred in close proximity to each other in Pennsylvania, near a Bayer Pharmaceuticals Corp. plant in Lebanon County. Authorities believe thieves may be targeting trucks from that plant.

“I don’t think there is any doubt that this particular manufacturing plant is being targeted,” FBI Spokesperson Jerri Williams told the Pennsylvania Patriot-News. “If someone is looking to steal pharmaceuticals, then they’re going to be looking out for the particular trucks that are leaving this plant and waiting for the right opportunity to commandeer and steal it. This is not a coincidence.”

The most recent theft occurred in Middlesex Township, PA, when a truck and trailer stolen from a truck stop Aug. 25.

According to a police report, the driver of the truck, whose name was not released, entered the Flying J Truck Stop in Middlesex to get a drink. When he returned, his truck and trailer – which was loaded with $150,000 worth of aspirin and other unknown pills – was missing from the lot.

The truck’s satellite link listed the last known location of the truck at Indian Peg Road near Route 74, the report said.

According to the Patriot-News, this is the third theft of a truck and trailer carrying over-the-counter medication. The first incident occurred on March 16 in the parking lot of Boscov’s Truck Stop in Lower Paxton Township. The second occurred on April 21 near Bethel Township In Berks County.

Police described the latest stolen truck as a 2005 light blue Freightliner with Missouri license plate number 67813. The missing trailer is a white Great Dane with license number 987357. The truck number is 804, and the trailer number is 5551.

So far, all three of the tractors and one of the trailers has been recovered. Anyone with information regarding the theft can contact the Middlesex Police Department at (717) 249-7191.

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