Porch pirates: 3 NYC teens accused of stealing thousands worth of packages in NJ

TEANECK, New Jersey (WABC) -- Three teenagers from the Bronx were arrested and charged with theft after allegedly stealing thousands of dollars of packages from residences in Teaneck.

Police say 19-year-old Aderlin Lluberez, 18-year-old Albiery Lugo and a 17-year-old juvenile were taken into custody on Monday after an alert resident witnessed the group steal a package and called police.

With the help of a second resident, officers were provided with video of one of the suspects, as well as the suspects' vehicle.

As officers patrolled the area, they spotted the car and initiated a traffic stop.

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Authorities say the officers quickly noticed that the passenger compartment of the car was packed with what appeared to be stolen packages.

"Immediately upon walking up to the car, the backseat was loaded with packages, open packages, unopened packages," Teaneck police Det. Lt. Kenneth Egbert said.

A search of the trunk revealed it was packed with stolen items, police said.

The investigation further revealed that the trio had allegedly driven around the area scouting houses for packages that had been delivered.

They said a passenger would then exit the vehicle with an empty box from a prior theft, giving the appearance he was making a delivery.

The thief would then leave the empty box on the front steps and steal the delivered item from the residence, according to officials.

"We believe they were doing that to make it appear as if they were actually delivering a package, not to draw the attention of neighbors, and then they'd pick up the other package that wasn't opened then bring that back to the car," Egbert said.

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The three teens are charged with third-degree theft and are believed to have stolen from at least 11 homes in the area.

Paul Jimenez was one of the victims, and the self-proclaimed sneakerhead drove from Scarsdale to retreive his stolen sneakers.

"I've been waiting for those for three weeks to show up," he said. "I thought it was really bold that he would see me pull into the driveway, know I was home...and in that 10 seconds I plugged in the car, he got out of his car, grabbed them, and took off."

Anyone who believes they may have been victimized are asked to call the Teaneck Police Department.

"We got lucky that we caught this group," Egberg said. "But it happens quite often, we have quite a few reports of it. And it's not just limited to the holiday season anymore, it's all year long."

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