Maryland and U.S. authorities yesterday arrested 69 persons as a result of a 16-month-long fake fencing operation in which $630,000 in stolen goods were reported recovered.
Arrest warrants for 92 persons were issued yesterday in the aftermath of Operation Bear Trap, which state troopers and FBI agents set up at three separate sotrefront locations in Landscowne and the Dundalk section of Baltimore County, and Hagerstown according to William Clark, State Police spokesman.
Besides the persons named in the warrants, plice are investigating an additional 50 persons. More arrests are expected today, police said.
Among the stolen items recovered were 62 automobiles, 32 motorcycles, a 10-wheel diesel truck, 210 checks and credit cards, 147 citizen band radios, 562 pieces of stereo equipment, 43 typewriters, 274 pieces of jewelry, 14 television sets and 39 guns, Clark said.
The coin collection was traced to the robbery-murder of an 84-year-old woman in TOledo, Ohio, after the two men who sold the coins to police told under-cover agents, "We had to hit the old woman to get it (the collection)," Clark said.
Lane Bonner, special agent in the FBI's Baltimore office, said Maryland authorities contacted law enforcement officers in Ohio who later arrested Lester Keran, 35 and Jack Beatty, 24 in connection with the slaying.
Keran was convicted of murder in July and has been sentenced to be executed Nov. 4. Beatty also was convicted but has not yet been sentenced, Bonner said.