A Yorktown man was sentenced to prison on July 16 for taking part in a scheme to steal, transport and sell a shipment of approximately 1,200 computers, valued at more than $1 million, bound for two public schools in New Jersey.
U.S. District Judge Kenneth Karas sentenced Anton Saljanin, 46, to four years behind bars after he pled guilty in October in federal court to one count of conspiracy to commit theft from an interstate shipment, interstate transportation of stolen property, and receipt, possession, and sale of stolen property, and one count of theft from an interstate shipment.
“Anton Saljanin was the ringleader and insider in an inside job that resulted in the theft of over $1 million worth of computers meant for school kids,” said U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman. “Now, having admitted his role in this truck hijacking scheme, he has been sentenced to prison for his crimes.”
The complaint and indictment filed against Saljanin and his brother, Gjon Saljanin, 43, also a resident of Yorktown, alleged on or about January 15, 2014, Anton Saljanin, a shipping company driver, drove a truck from Yorktown to a technology company in Massachusetts to pick up a shipment of about 1,200 computers with his brother.
The next morning, Anton Saljanin reported to the Yorktown Police Department that the truck had been stolen from a parking lot in Yorktown. Later that day, he told police he had been driving around looking for the truck when he spotted it from the highway in a parking lot in Danbury, Connecticut.
However, it was determined that the truck would not have been visible in that parking lot by a driver from the highway, and cell phone records indicated Saljanin did not take the route he claimed he did.
Yorktown police detectives examined the truck and found a window had been broken. They also discovered broken glass at the scene in Danbury but not in Yorktown, suggesting the window had been smashed there.
In addition, security camera footage from various locations in Yorktown contradicted where the Saljanin brothers told police they traveled on January 15, 2014. Instead, they traveled to the Yorktown home of Ujka Vulaj, 56, a longtime friend, and unloaded the computers.
Federal officials alleged from January to April 2014, Vulaj sold the stolen computers, some with the help of a co-worker, Carlos Caceres, 39, of the Bronx, for between $500 and $800 in cash, far below their market value of $1,000, and each computer was handed over in plain brown cardboard packaging.
Gjon Saljanin was sentenced in May to one year and one day in prison and two years of supervised release. He was also ordered to forfeit $989,424 in ill-gotten gains, the same amount his brother was ordered to pay in restitution.
Vulaj was sentenced in May to 12 months in prison and ordered to forfeit $989,424 in ill-gotten gains. Caceres was sentenced to 27 months in jail and ordered to forfeit $331,188 in ill-gotten gains.
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