WASHINGTON — The Federal Bureau of Investigation is probing the thefts of three trucks carting merchandise and paychecks for two big area stores.
The thefts, which took place in the last five weeks, are believed to be unrelated incidents.
The first truck, loaded with Hecht’s merchandise ranging from jeans to lingerie, was stolen late Oct. 18 from a Hecht’s warehouse yard in northeast Washington, said FBI Special Agent Susan Lloyd of the bureau’s Washington field office.
A second truck, stolen from a loading dock at Hecht’s main department store in downtown Washington Nov. 14, contained employee paychecks, some of which were later dumped into mailboxes, Lloyd said.
The unmarked trucks, both of which were 40 feet long and owned by private carriers working for Hecht’s, were later found empty in two Washington suburbs in Maryland, Lloyd said.
The third truck, carrying general merchandise for Nordstrom, was stolen on Nov. 15 from outside a Federal Express terminal in another Washington, D.C., suburb, Lloyd said.
This truck, which was a rental that was also 40 feet long, was found empty the next day in the parking lot of a Fairfax, Va., church.
Lloyd would not disclose the value of the trucks’ contents.
Hecht’s has offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to the apprehension and conviction of the thieves.
Nordstrom executives here would not comment on the theft.
Eventually, the thefts may turn out to be connected, but Lloyd said, “At this point, we’re treating them as separate investigations.”