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  1. #1
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    Default Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    From: Joe Traynor <joemtraynor@xxxxx>
    Date: Sun, Jan 19, 2014 at 12:56 PM
    Subject: stolen hives
    Last night (1/18) several hundred stolen hives were located by a fenced compound on the west side of Weedpatch Hwy (Hwy 184) about 1/10 mile north of Panama Lane.

    Many of the hives were in the process of having ID marks sanded off with some frames being transferred to orange boxes (a chop-shop operation).
    All the stolen colonies were double-deeps (no shallow supers).
    Chip Vannoy, Joe Romance and Jerry Stoddard hives were found there.
    Some believe that the hives were gathered to fill an order from a grower(s) that wanted bees at cut-rate prices. Most or all of the hives were likely taken from stockpile sites in Kern County. One person was arrested, another released. For more info, contact Joe Romance (661)549-0292 or <JPRomance@aol>

    ++++++++++++
    Subject: Victim locates $40,000 worth of stolen beehives
    Details: Details: On 1/18/14 Deputies from the Lamont Substation were dispatched to 6124 Panama Lane for the recovery of stolen bees. During their investigation, Deputies learned GABINO JORDAN PENA, age 32, was in possession of approximately 256 beehives in boxes and several other empty beehive boxes. The beehives were ultimately determined to be stolen from United Honeybees. The value of the beehives was estimated at $40,000. The beehives were recovered by United Honeybees and GABINO JORDAN PENA was booked into the Central Receiving Facility for PC 496(a), possession of stolen property, PC 537(e), possession of stolen property with altered identification marks, and PC 135, destruction of evidence. PENA’S bail was set at $15,000. The Rural crime Investigation Unit conducted follow-up investigation and located additional victims. The investigation is on-going. Anyone having information on this incident is asked to contact KCSO Detective Casey Brunsell at 661-392-4370.
    Last edited by JWChesnut; 01-24-2014 at 09:14 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Stafford, Virginia
    Posts
    296

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    I cannot stand when someone takes short cuts to profitability by stealing from someone who has put their hard work, blood, sweat and tears into an operation. I hope he gets hammered. He is lucky he is not in Virginia. They would put him under the jail here for an Ag theft.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    Grimesland, NC
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    28

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    They need to make an example.
    Only 15000 bail??

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO United States
    Posts
    401

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Matt 1954, I feel the same way about thieves!
    JW Chesnut, interesting that their bail was less than the value of the property they stole, and what happen to the weed?
    Last edited by fieldsofnaturalhoney; 01-24-2014 at 03:25 PM.

  5. #5
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    Jul 2013
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    Morro Bay, California, USA
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    960

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Bust site in GE. Nothing suspicious (other than valley trash) in the August 13 image?. I believe I see hives in the 4/2011 image (turn on "historical imagery") in the View menu. Which might mean a long running operation. Can't move 256 hives on pallets without a skidsteer, low boy or flatbed. There will be license plates, and lots more records. Can't market them to a almond farmer without a cell phone and such. The low-ball bail might be because the paint shop peon gave up some names.


    Email commentary says the hives were being repainted in Bright Orange bodies and White tops. Anyone remember something that obvious.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Spanish Fork, UT, USA
    Posts
    386

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Very frustrating to hear about stolen hives. I had an an entire bee yard stolen about seven years ago. The thief was never caught.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Stafford, Virginia
    Posts
    296

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    From personal experience, when I arrested someone on a theft charge, the Federal magistrate would ask what my recommendation on bond was. If the defendant did not have a prior record, had ties to the community, children, married, etc. , bail was typically set at 50% of the amount stolen. I don't see this bail as unreasonable. The purpose of bail, is and always will be, I hope, sufficient to ensure the defendant appears in court for all proceedings and not based on anger. If bail is excessive, you encourage defendants to fight it out with the police instead of cooperating with the process. This could potentially lead to civilian injuries if the defendant is hell bent on staying out of jail.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,553

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    It is always good to see thieves get caught. A rarity in our world...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Lassen, California, USA
    Posts
    154

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Quote Originally Posted by tdsiders View Post
    They need to make an example.
    Only 15000 bail??
    Thats what I was thinking, bail should be AT LEAST $40,000.00, the value of the colonies, but it shout be increased for the inconvenience caused the owners too!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,553

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    It's only bail. The purpose of bail is to make sure people show up for trial. They are assumed innocent until they have a trial and are found otherwise. If they are found guilty, then you consider what is a fair punishment. Bail is not intended to be punishment.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
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    Lassen, California, USA
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    154

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    I know its only a deposit on a promise to appear, but $15,000.00 is nothing. Ive seen plenty of people skip, and since this would probably be considered a low priority case, no one is gonna go look for him, while he is off committing more crime like this, inconveniencing more people.
    JMHO

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Morro Bay, California, USA
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    960

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Additional Details --
    http://www.bakersfieldcalifornian.co...ocal-chop-shop

    """ Another man believed to have sold the stolen bees to Pena remains at large, Kern County Sheriff's Detective Casey Brunsell said.

    At least some of the bees had been brought to town from North Dakota for next month's almond pollination, the biggest honeybee event in the country.

    While bee theft is a fairly common occurrence in Kern County, Brunsell said Saturday's recovery of 256 hives -- each containing a few thousand bees -- stands apart.

    "This is probably one of the bigger recoveries I'm aware of in recent memory," he said.

    One of the victims, North Dakota beekeeper Joe Romance, said he helped recover the bees by acting on a tip from an associate suspicious of Pena's offer to rent out some of the bees.

    Romance, who had only noticed the bees missing the day before, went to Pena's house in the 6100 block of Panama Lane, saying he was an almond grower looking for bees to rent.

    A representative for Pena's North Dakota employer, R G Bees Inc., said Pena did not have access to a truck or a loader and did not appear to have stolen the bees himself. He added that his company's bees had not been stolen."""



    Quality paint job.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
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    6,468

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    orange hives is kinda fitting for these guys
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    DFW area, TX, USA
    Posts
    1,123

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Thanks for keeping us in the loop JWC. I wonder, how could a system of laws turn this into a deterrent for like minded scoundrels?
    LeeB
    I try to learn from my mistakes, and from yours when you give me a heads up :)

  15. #15
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    Pleasant Shade, TN
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    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Good thing it didn't happen to me. I'd probably be the one in prison if it did. Can't stand a thief.
    A man is worth just as much as the things about which he busies himself- Marcus Aurelius

  16. #16

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    I'm lucky I guess not to have any of mine stolen, yet. Being in the suburbs, I'm mo worried about vandalism if the wrong person finds them, or some punk decides to poison them just for fun.

    I can't stand a thief. My frat house was robbed when I was in college, and I personally lost over $2000: computer, calculator, several rare guns, etc. Of course, no leads and never recovered.

    I'm thinking maybe some day I will get into the game of commercial pollination. Stuff like this scares me. It's just one more malady in the world of beekeeping. It makes it that much harder for us to make an honest living. It's so bad, most retail stores build in a percentage of their markup on a product to cover theft loss.

    Hmm...how do we make hives less "steal able"?
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  17. #17
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    Jan 2013
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    Grimesland, NC
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    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    i set game cameras up at my outyards so that hopefully i can get a description of person vehicle etc… if i am hit by thieves.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Morro Bay, California, USA
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    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian View Post
    orange hives is kinda fitting for these guys
    Yup, exactly matches the orange jumpsuits they'll be wearing for next harvest. Wonder if they planned that.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Milwaukee, Wisconsin
    Posts
    106

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    The worst part is going out into the woods and finding some tipped over from punk kids. It's time that everyone invests some money into a good game/trail camera. It's hard enough keeping bees alive in wisconsin without stupidity.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Solano, California, USA
    Posts
    1,441

    Default Re: Hive Theft ring busted in Weedpatch

    Anyone else giving a little head shake on the valuation. 256 hives are worth 40K? Not mine!!!!!

    Did no one check the calendar and see how close we are to almond bloom? You couldn't by a load like that for under $300 each IMO.

    $76,800 is more in the correct range for the date. (256x300) If anyone who puts that valuation down has any for sale at that price I will be there tomorrow with cash if he wants to retire..


    If the state does not get its act together real soon in quarantining this kind of garbage with some hefty visits to the orange suited poke wearing big house I would say its time to find a unique and stately 500 year old Valley oak, a thread bare tie down rope and pair them together with this louse's ankles on a breezy 110 degree August afternoon after reminding him that he has serendipitously self entered into the first annual Weedpatch upside down bee thief bee beard contest May keep the poor folks in Kern from having to many entrants in the subsequent annual ones. If not

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