Police say teens were recruited to steal liquor and tobacco
A joint investigation was announced Wednesday morning involving a massive retail theft case. Video by ktnv.comvideo
Federal authorities have arrested a North Las Vegas store owner accused of buying and reselling black-market liquor and baby formula he thought had been stolen from area supermarkets. Video by ktnv.comvideo
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- A joint investigation was announced Wednesday morning involving a massive retail theft case.
The focal point of the investigation was Sunny's Market, near Lake Mead and Englestad.
That's where three adults are accused of recruiting teenagers to steal liquor and tobacco products from large retailers and bring them to Sunny's Market to be sold at a large markup.
Two suspects were arrested and police are looking for a third- a co-owner of a hookah lounge who is also wanted on drug charges.
The investigation involved the Las Vegas Metro Police Department, the North Las Vegas Police Department, and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
It began when Metro made a shoplifting bust back in February in the southeast part of Las Vegas. Soon after, they realized they had a much larger problem on their hands.
Metro reached out to other authorities and grocery retailers including Smith's, Kroger and Sam's Club.
Police say the theft operation is bad enough, but the use of teenagers to carry out the plot is reprehensible.
"We think it's very detrimental to the neighborhood to be in a situation where a business owner would go and recruit the teenagers from the neighborhood to steal for them- to commit a crime for them for their own financial gain," North Las Vegas police spokesman Tim Bedwell said.
One of the suspects arrested was apprehended by the FBI. The other was apprehended by Metro.