U.S. Charges 8 in Beer Heists That Targeted Trains and Warehouses

Eight Bronx men were charged on Wednesday with stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of beer, mostly Modelo and Corona imported from Mexico, by robbing train yards and warehouses in dozens of thefts across the Northeast over the past two years.

An indictment unsealed by federal prosecutors in Manhattan accuses Jose Cesari as being the mastermind of what it describes as the “Beer Theft Enterprise” and says he recruited other participants in the brazen heists via Instagram posts.

In one post, the indictment says, Mr. Cesari wrote, “Need workers who want to make money.” The post had a “Yes” or “No” button, a moneybag emoji and a railroad track in the background, the indictment says. In another, the indictment says, he offered a “guarantee” that those he hired would “make 100k+ in a month” by following the “beer train method.”

Mr. Cesari, 27, who was at large on Wednesday, was charged with conspiracy to steal from interstate or foreign shipments by carrier and six other counts. The seven others face the same conspiracy charge, and several were also charged with other crimes.

Those charged as Mr. Cesari’s co-defendants are Kemar Bonitto, 38; Justin Bruno, 23; Miguel Cintron, 32; Antonio Gonzalez, 33; Luis Izquierdo, 40; Wakeim Johnson, 31; and Deylin Martinez-Guerrero, 28.

“Today’s arrests reinforce that the Beer Theft Enterprise’s staggering thefts will not be tolerated,” Damian Williams, the U.S. attorney in Manhattan, said in a statement.

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