Sunday, November 27, 2005

Locking down the accused Lego Thief: William Swanberg

William Swanberg

William Swanberg, 40, of Reno, Nevada, is accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of lego building blocks. CNN reported:
Target estimates Swanberg stole up to $200,000 worth of the brick sets pilfered from their stores in Oregon, Utah, Arizona, Nevada and California. The Legos were resold on the Internet, officials said...

Swanberg is accused of switching the bar codes on Lego boxes, replacing an expensive one with a cheaper label...

A Target security guard stopped Swanberg at a Portland-area store November 17, after he bought 10 boxes of the Star Wars Millennium Falcon set.

In his parked car, detectives found 56 of the Star Wars sets, valued at $99 each, as well as 27 other Lego sets.

Records of the Lego collector's Web site, Bricklink.Com, show that Swanberg has sold nearly $600,000 worth of Legos since 2002

Mr. Swanberg's Bricklink.com profile is currently still online. It shows he has been a member since March 10, 2002 and has obtained the lofty "Orange Brick" ranking with a 6190 feedback profile. He also operates an online store there named "Bartering the Brick." He was still earning praise from his customers this weekend. Are his online customers "on the hook" for receiving stolen merchandise? Agents had to use a 20-foot truck to haul away the evidence - mountains of Lego bricks - from the home of Mr. Swanberg.

The AP reported that authorities had to use a 20-foot truck to cart away evidence from Swan's home.

links:
Police: Man steals $200,000 worth of Lego sets [AP/msnbc, Nov. 25, 2005]
Time to build a police station: Man accused of Lego thefts [usatoday, Nov. 25, 2005]
William Swanberg [Wikipedia]

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