Police: 22 arrested in train cargo thefts that netted $18 million in goods

A crackdown was made on a criminal network that was targeting railroad cargo containers. The tracks back in January were littered with discarded boxes from stolen items. (Source: KCAL/KCBS/LAPD/OBTAINED BY KCBS/CNN)
Published: Nov. 18, 2022 at 3:38 AM MST
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LOS ANGELES (KCAL/KCBS) - The Los Angeles Police Department said it has made a significant crackdown on a criminal network that was targeting railroad cargo containers.

On Thursday, LAPD announced the arrests of 22 people in connection with the theft of $18 million in merchandise.

In January, the Union Pacific tracks in downtown L.A. were littered with thousands of boxes after thieves routinely stole from passing trains.

A public-private partnership called the Train Burglary Task Force is using a combination of modern technology and old-fashioned police work to stop the crimes.

Tools like security cameras, artificial intelligence and fencing combined with increased patrols have reduced calls about railroad theft by 60 percent.

The LAPD said it hopes publicity about the mass crackdown will send a clear message to anyone thinking about stealing from railroad cargo containers.