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Hardware heists point to racket

Hardware heists point to racket

Victorian distributors are being targeted by what police suspect is an organised crime syndicate operating in Melbourne.

Late last month, three local distributors and one reseller were the victims of professional burglaries totalling close to $1 million.

The companies are Electronic Resources Australia, Senteq Information Systems, Business Computers of Australia (BCA) and Com One International.

The biggest heist was at Electronic Resources where more than $500,000 worth of Quantum hard drives, Intel CPUs, CD-ROM drives and RAM were lifted some time between Sunday 22 Feb and Monday 23 February.

Investigating this case is Detective Senior Constable John Carmody. Carmody said that while burglaries of computer companies are not rare in Victoria, the size and similarity of these three jobs suggests "the same crew may be responsible".

Lawrence Dai, operations manager with Electronic Resources, said the stolen goods will be very difficult to trace as the company does not use a proper barcoding system in its warehouse.

This was the first time Electronic Resources had been hit, Dai said. He also ruled out the possibility that the break-in may have been an inside job.

Senteq lost $110,000 worth of Compaq Armada notebooks and IBM PCs. BCA, which is in the same street as Senteq, lost $150,000 worth of Compaq and Toshiba notebooks.

If you have information regarding the burglaries, call CrimeStoppers on 1800 333 000.


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