Multi-million dollar crime ring uncovered thanks to observant of - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS


Multi-million dollar crime ring uncovered thanks to observant off-duty officer

Source: RNN Source: RNN

An arrest in the Hub City helped The Secret Service uncover a multi-million dollar crime ring, and it was all thanks to an observant off duty Hattiesburg police officer. 

According to Hattiesburg police, Officer David Wynn II observed a male subject exit a vehicle at a gas station on West 4th Street.

Wynn said he saw the subject open the door of the gas pump and tamper with something inside. That is when Wynn said the subject noticed him watching and fled the scene. 

According to police, Wynn followed the subjects and was able to obtain the vehicle's license plate number. 

Officers were able to set up a traffic stop, which led to the arrests of Yadian Valdes and Juan Karel Marrero Barja. Both Valdes and Barja were charged with conspiracy to commit a felony. 

Detective Gareth Wood was assigned to the case and immediately contacted The Secret Service. 

Further investigation concluded that Valdes was wanted out of Arkansas for larceny, and was also a fugitive from another jurisdiction. 

A Secret Service investigation revealed that Valdes was the second man in charge of a multi-million dollar crime ring, according to HPD. 

The discovery by Wynn led to numerous arrests and seizures of assets such as money, accounts and vehicles, according to HPD. 

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