NEW JERSEY BROTHERS CONVICTED OF SHIPPING $1 MILLION WORTH OF STOLEN CARS
July 8, 2015
Two New Jersey men were convicted today for their roles in a large-scale conspiracy to ship stolen luxury cars to Hong Kong and elsewhere, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
Andrew Clarke, 44 of Irvington, New Jersey, and Llewellyn Clarke, 42 of North Plainfield, New Jersey, were convicted on all four counts of a superseding indictment charging them each with one count of conspiracy to transport stolen motor vehicles and three counts of transportation of stolen motor vehicles in interstate and foreign commerce. They were convicted following a three-week trial before U.S. District Judge Robert B. Kugler in Camden federal court. The jury deliberated for about three hours before returning the guilty verdicts.
According to documents filed in in this case and evidence presented at trial:
The stolen car exportation ring was investigated by a multi-agency task force led by Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). The investigation revealed that the Clarkes were purchasing stolen luxury cars from thieves operating in northern New Jersey and New York. The Clarke brothers then recruited other conspirators to "re-tag" those cars, or have fraudulent vehicle identification numbers placed on the cars to mask the fact that they were stolen, and then had false title documents produced for those cars in New Jersey and Georgia. After the fake documents were created, the Clarkes shipped several of those stolen cars, valued at nearly $1 million, from New Jersey to Hong Kong, while other cars were shipped to Georgia, Maryland and elsewhere. Once overseas or out-of-state, the stolen cars were then re-sold, some to unsuspecting buyers who later learned that their vehicles were in fact stolen.
Both defendants were detained pending their sentencing, which is scheduled for Oct.15, 2015. Both defendants face up to 35 years in prison as a result of their convictions.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of ICE HSI, under the leadership of Executive Associate Director Peter Edge and Acting Special Agent in Charge Kevin Kelly, and the N.J. State Police, under the direction of Superintendent Col. Rick Fuentes, for the investigation leading to today's convictions. He also thanked U.S. Customs and Border Protection; the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor; Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray, Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew Carey, Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez, and Union County Acting Prosecutor Grace H. Park, the Essex and Hudson County Sheriff's Departments, the Newark Police Department, the U.S. Coast Guard Investigative Service, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission, the Georgia Department of Revenue, and the Maryland State Police for their roles.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Josť R. Almonte and James M. Donnelly of the U.S. Attorney's Office Criminal Division in Newark.