One day not too long ago, Hayes Investigators received a call from a client noticing what appeared to be much of their product being sold in various online selling websites such as Craigslist, EBay, etc. At that point, Hayes Investigators started working with both websites in trying to get the items and sellers’ information to make the match. In addition to the website investigations, we needed to be able to identify the product to be missing from the client’s warehouse. This type of product was very distinctive and could be easily identified on the web. Hayes Investigators then went into action and started to make a few purchases of the items which subsequently provided us with the seller’s name and address information. We then searched a Social Security database website and matched a SSN to the seller. Once this information was obtained, we then matched payroll records with the employee and discovered something very strange. It was discovered that the employee who was selling the items on the various websites, was not the employee stealing the product. This employee worked in a completely different location which did not house this type of product. This information told us that we had multiple employees at work here. What we did not know at the time was that a possible wholesaler could be involved as a middle man.
During the interview with the web seller employee, it was discovered that another employee was stealing the merchandise and then selling the merchandise to the company’s wholesaler who then sold it to the web seller employee. The web seller employee would then turn around and share the profits with all involved. In the end, both employees were prosecuted as well as the wholesaler who was investigated for purchasing stolen property.
As we get more into the electronic online age, you will see that theft cases will take a new shape. Many of the cases we handle now involve some type of website, seller’s portal, or just plain chat room discussions. Although the age of information has come to everyone’s computer, we must be more diligent in securing our product in our warehouses, stores, and in the transportation process.
If you think that your company or location has an employee issue, please don’t hesitate to call Hayes International for help! We are here to help protect your product as well as make you profitable. $