Investigators have tracked down a cache of a half million dollars worth of cosmetics stolen from Walgreens and CVS stores throughout the Bay Area, and arrested two people on suspicion of buying the pilfered merchandise, officials said Friday.
CVS and Walgreens stores in Berkeley were targeted five times in January and February, and an investigation later found that the same thieves were hitting the chain stores throughout the Bay Area, police said.
Four suspects believed to be behind the thefts were arrested on Feb. 6 after an incident at a Walgreens in San Francisco. Three of the four suspects have since been charged with 29 criminal counts in Alameda County, according to police.
Investigators from the San Francisco district attorney’s office, San Francisco Police Department, Organized Retail Crime Task Force and Berkeley Police Department worked together to identify Jimenez as the alleged purchaser of the stolen goods.
On Wednesday, detectives searched Jimenez’s home on the 2000 block of San Leandro Boulevard and a nearby storage unit, and seized approximately $500,000 worth of stolen items, mostly cosmetics.
Rodriguez and Jimenez were booked into Berkeley City Jail, and charged with receiving stolen goods and accessory to a felony, according to the Berkeley Police Department.