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Nearly $200,000 in stolen goods seized in San Francisco retail theft bust

CBS News Live
CBS News Bay Area Live

SAN FRANCISCO -- Police in San Francisco on Thursday announced the recent arrest of a suspect in a retail-theft investigation that recovered almost $200,000 in stolen items.

According to a release issued by the San Francisco Police Department, in early 2022 the SFPD Burglary Unit and Organized Retail Theft Taskforce launched a months-long investigation into an individual possessing and selling stolen over-the-counter medication and personal care products. The items stolen from local retail stores were being sold via an online platform and shipped to individuals throughout the country. 

Investigators identified 38-year-old San Francisco resident Sergio Manuel Puga-Tenorio  as the primary suspect in the fencing operation.  

On Wednesday, SFPD investigators served a search warrant on Tenorio's home on Milton Street in the city's Ingleside District. While serving the warrant, police discovered and seized thousands of stolen items estimated to be worth nearly $200,000. Investigators are working with local retailers to determine the origin of the stolen items.  

SF fencing operation bust
SF fencing operation bust. SFPD

Investigators estimate that Puga-Tenorio's fencing operation was yielding over half a million dollars annually for at least the last three years. Investigators also believe that the operation is not unique and that there are several additional individuals in the city conducting similar fencing operations. SFPD said they would continue working with local retailers and the SF district attorney to hold these individuals accountable.  

Puga-Tenorio was transported to San Francisco County Jail where he was booked on one count of possession of stolen property. 

Anyone with information is asked to call the SFPD Tip Line at 1-415-575-4444 or Text a Tip to TIP411 and begin the text message with SFPD.   

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