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Connecticut's AG responds to a wave of organized crime in the state

Connecticut Attorney General William Tong
Office of Connecticut Attorney General William Tong
Connecticut Attorney General William Tong

Connecticut Attorney General William Tong wants to put a stop to a recent increase in organized retail crime.

The state has experienced several high-profile cases of shoplifting, including at a CVS in Oxford this month. Security camera video of two cars being filled with stolen laundry detergent bottles went viral online.

Tong said these robberies are part of a national crime wave.

“You have crime rings of lower level people who are being organized by middle level criminals and then above them bigger bosses who are putting people out on the streets in these smash-and-grab operations in stores across our country and here in Connecticut,” he said.

The state Attorney General’s office plans to pressure big companies such as Amazon and Ebay to be more responsible to identify the source products sold on their platforms. Tong wants the retailers to put in place a system to ensure the products are from a legal source.

“But we want to go after the big fish,” Governor Ned Lamont said. “I want to go after these wholesalers. I want to go after these criminal gangs and organizations that are doing this and turning this into a billion dollar theft enterprise. Hundreds of millions of dollars in thefts right here in the state of Connecticut.”

John is a former news fellow with WSHU Public Radio.