When people hear the phrase "federal charges", a number of different things may pop into their heads. Some may think that this phrase refers to white collar crimes while others may think of drug trafficking charges.
But several men from Wisconsin are facing federal charges after being accused of planning to steal more than million dollars worth of products. A total of six men, four of them from Wisconsin, were indicted yesterday and charged with plotting to steal merchandise and sell it in other states.
There is no information about how federal authorities came to suspect the six men's involvement in the plot. Had there been an informant? Were agents tipped off to the alleged scheme? Did one of the men accidentally talk to an undercover police officer?
Whether information came from an anonymous tip or some other source, federal authorities likely launched an investigation to determine whether a scheme existed and who was involved. The men are accused of stealing approximately $1.3 million of merchandise that included shoes, food products and even the trucks that the merchandise was loaded on.
The six men were arrested and have been formally charged. Being in this type of situation can be frustrating and confusing. Any criminal charge can lead to serious penalties such as prison, fines and even rehabilitation programs.
It is unclear what specific legal sanctions these men will face if they are convicted of the crime. One man is planning to plead not guilty; will the other men follow in suit?
Source: Wisconsin.com: "6 indicted in alleged Milwaukee truck theft scheme," Associated Press, Nov. 1, 2011