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SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah man was arrested after allegedly selling "large amounts" of stolen merchandise online that police say he had others steal for him, according to a press release from the Utah Attorney General's Office.
For over a year, Oscar Martinez, 45, of West Valley City, "arranged for people who are addicted to drugs" to steal from stores like Home Depot before he would then resell the merchandise online, according to the release.
Officers with the Utah Attorney General Office's economic crimes unit — the Crimes Against Statewide Economy unit — recovered over $80,000 worth of stolen goods including "brand-name power tools, home goods and sporting equipment," state officials said in the Saturday release.
"Organized retail crime is a very serious problem in Utah, and is also a national trend," said unit commander Christopher Walden. "It's become an epidemic and is driving up the costs of these items so that the stores can cover their losses."
Martinez was arrested for investigation of possession of stolen property, acquiring stolen property and money laundering. Information about his arrest was not released.