3 Chilean nationals accused of burglarizing high-end Michigan homes

Dec 11, 2023, 2:08 PM

Three Chilean nationals have been arrested in connection with a series of burglaries of mansions and other high-end homes in suburban Detroit and across Michigan.

The charges were announced Monday by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel who said the three are suspected in eight break-ins after they arrived in the Detroit area on a Feb. 1 flight from Los Angeles.

Nessel called them part of “an international crime ring” that “targeted lavish homes of affluent Michigan residents.”

They “employ technology to thwart alarm systems and take extensive precautions to avoid being identified on home security systems and to avoid leaving forensic evidence at the crime scenes,” Nessel told reporters.

Several law enforcement agencies believe the crimes are conducted by “non-citizen, temporary residents from countries in South America who travel to the United States and the state of Michigan specifically in order to conduct these burglaries,” Nessel added. “There are more out there.”

Each of the three are charged with conducting a criminal enterprise and home invasion. They currently are being held in Indiana for similar burglaries there.

Over the past few years, high-end homes in Southern California, especially in San Diego County have been broken into.

Last week, Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard announced the creation of a new task force to address the rise in break-ins in Michigan. The task force includes officers from more than two dozen police departments. They will be assisted by the FBI and other federal agencies.

Bouchard said five homes were burglarized in one recent weekend in Bloomfield Hills and nearby Bloomfield Township, and seven others were targeted over Thanksgiving weekend.

“They very often try to approach homes in a secluded manner – from woods, for example,” Bouchard said. “They’re looking for jewelry, cash, safes, even a larger safe. They’ll take that with them and try to brute-force it open later. In one of the few times when they went into a house and the people were home, as soon as they found out, they ran.”

Nessel also announced the arrests of two Detroit men and a Detroit woman in connection with an organized retail crime ring involved in stealing merchandise from Lululemon and Ulta stores across the Detroit area. They are believed to be involved in at least 30 incidents since December 2022. Losses exceed $200,000, Nessel said.

“Small organized groups have been observed to enter a storefront, grab as much high-value merchandise as they can carry or load into a shopping basket and simply walk or run out the front door to an awaiting getaway vehicle,” she said.

National News

Associated Press

Three little piggies at a yoga class = maximum happiness

SPENCER, Mass. (AP) — Three little piggies went to a yoga class. Their human companions had a blast. Wilbur, Charlotte and Bluey fit right into a growing trend of yoga with animals, adding some fun to the usual physical and mental wellness exercises at a class in central Massachusetts. Darting and strolling among the yoginis […]

1 hour ago

Associated Press

Remember last year’s Memorial Day travel jams? Chances are they will be much worse this year

You didn’t think summer travel would be easy, did you? Highways and airports are likely to be jammed the next few days as Americans head out for Memorial Day weekend getaways and then return home. AAA predicts this will be the busiest start-of-summer weekend in nearly 20 years, with 43.8 million people expected to travel […]

1 hour ago

Associated Press

5 dead and nearly 3 dozen hurt in tornadoes that tore through Iowa, officials say

GREENFIELD, Iowa (AP) — A deadly tornado that wreaked havoc in the small city of Greenfield, Iowa, left four people dead and nearly three dozen injured, officials said, while a fifth person was killed elsewhere. The twister that tore through the city on Tuesday was rated at least an EF-3 by the National Weather Service […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Thousands of journalists have fled homelands due to repression, threats and conflict, UN expert says

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Thousands of journalists have fled their home countries in recent years to escape political repression, save their lives and escape conflict – but in exile they are often vulnerable to physical, digital and legal threats, a U.N. investigator said Wednesday. Irene Khan said in a report to the U.N. General Assembly […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

Texas health department appoints anti-abortion OB-GYN to maternal mortality committee

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas’ health department has appointed an outspoken anti-abortion OB-GYN to a committee that reviews pregnancy-related deaths as doctors have been warning that the state’s restrictive abortion ban puts women’s lives at risk. Dr. Ingrid Skop was among the new appointees to the Texas Maternal Morality and Morbidity Review Committee announced last […]

6 hours ago

Associated Press

Missouri prosecutors to seek death penalty in killing of court employee and police officer

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri prosecutors said Wednesday that they intend to seek the death penalty against a Kansas City-area man who is charged with murder in the killings of a court employee who tried to serve an eviction notice on him and a police officer who responded. Larry Acree, 70, of Independence, is […]

8 hours ago

3 Chilean nationals accused of burglarizing high-end Michigan homes