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North Haven Police Bust Central American Stolen Clothing Ring

Suspects were emptying clothing donation bins along I-95 corridor and selling the goods in El Salvador, police said

Monday was a big day for North Haven police, as they busted a Central American stolen clothing ring and later arrested two New Haven men in an unrelated burglary.

In the first series of arrests, police said that early Monday, "a patrol officer saw a white van enter the parking lot near the intersection of Washington Avenue and Clintonville Road. The driver of the van turned off the headlights as he approached a large clothing donation bin. As the officer approached the van and began to speak with the operator he saw two sets of bolt cutters and several large bags of clothing. It was learned that the driver, and four passengers were traveling the Interstate 95 corridor from New York illegally accessing donation bins. The men told police they take the clothing from the bins, and ship it to El Salvador."

Charged with Criminal Trespass, Larceny Sixth Degree, Conspiracy, and Possession of Burglary Tools were: Julio Erazo (22), Josue Garcia (22), Jose Castro (32), Fancisco Erazo (18), and Jesus Zalaya Martinez (34) all from New York.  All five men were held on a $500 bond.      

The second crime

Later, at 9:20 a.m., North Haven officers responded to an unidentified Universal Drive store for a report of a robbery. 

According to police, Luis Morales, 41, "was in the process of taking $287 worth of merchandise from the store without making payment when management confronted him. Morales retrieved a needle from his pocket and threatened to use it as a weapon. He left the store and got into a vehicle driven by Marionex Garcia, 54."

Police said Garcia drove south on Universal Drive and when police stopped the car, both men attempted to run.

Morales and Garcia, both from New Haven, were charged with Conspiracy, Robbery First Degree, Larceny Sixth degree, and Interfering.  Garcia was held on a $10,000 bond, and Morales was held on a $50,000 bond.

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