NEW JERSEY – Four Pennsylvania men were charged for their roles in a conspiracy to burglarize approximately 55 United Parcel Service (UPS) warehouses across the United States including New Jersey in Bridgewater Township, Somerset County, resulting in the theft of approximately $1.6 million worth of merchandise, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced Friday.
Aboudramane Karamoko, 20, Sekou Fofanah, 20, Shamaire Brown, 19, and Quamaire Brown, 19, all of Philadelphia were charged with one count of conspiracy to commit cargo theft, Sellinger said.
Karamoko was arrested on Nov. 15 in State College, Pennsylvania, and had his initial appearance in the Middle District of Pennsylvania. Fofanah, Shamaire Brown, and Quamaire Brown were arrested on Nov. 16 in Philadelphia and had their initial appearances in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. All four were detained, Sellinger said.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court, from January 2021 through April 2023, the defendants and others conspired to commit burglaries of UPS facilities throughout the United States, including warehouses in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Indiana, and Rhode Island.
The four men and their conspirators would enter a targeted UPS facility – usually from late Saturday night into Sunday morning – by breaking the window of the loading bay door or by prying the loading bay door up so that a conspirator smaller in stature could squeeze through.
Once inside, the defendants and their conspirators would look for parcels marked with “lithium-ion battery” warnings, which indicated that they contained high-value electronic devices, such as a cell phone. The men and their conspirators would take the packages, which typically contained Apple products or other electronic devices, and would then flee by vehicle or on foot when law enforcement arrived. On at least one occasion, they also stole a firearm from a UPS warehouse.
The charge of conspiracy to commit cargo theft carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, or twice the amount of money involved in the offense, whichever is greater.