A new effort to crackdown on organized retail crime put domestic and transnational criminal organizations in the crosshairs of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) this week, with the beginning of Operation Boiling Point.
Working alongside industry partners, as well as federal, state, and local law enforcement and prosecutors, HSI will use Operation Boiling Point to raise consumer awareness about the issue, investigate crimes and generally seek to disrupt and dismantle organized theft groups (OTG). Last year, HSI reported new investigations of 59 organized retail crimes, a major uptick from the 19 begun in 2020. That said, these resulted in some 61 criminal arrests, 55 indictments and more than $9 million in assets seized. No details were released on how much was returned.
“Organized retail crime costs American businesses tens of billions of dollars each year,” Steve Francis, acting executive associate director of HSI, said. “Organized theft groups have become more brazen and violent, causing a destructive effect on the economy, resulting in lost jobs and higher prices. HSI works tirelessly to protect American businesses and consumers and is dedicated to put a stop to organized retail crime.”
Partners in HSI’s retail efforts include the Coalition of Law Enforcement and Retail (CLEAR), National Retail Federation (NRF), Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and the Transported Asset Protection Association, among others.