Wednesday, July 27, 2022
Fairfax County police have charged a Centreville man and two Fairfax County Public Schools employees in connection with a crime involving the theft of some 35,000 laptop computers. The Centreville resident is Fadi Atiyeh, 36.
According to police, detectives from the Major Crimes Bureau’s Criminal Investigation Division were notified in March that several thousand FCPS laptops were believed to have been illegally reallocated. They say these computers have an estimated value of more than $2 million.
These laptops were stored at a warehouse in the 6800 block of Industrial Road in Springfield and were slated to be auctioned. But instead, say police, they were diverted to a computer-recycling business in Loudoun County. Doing surveillance at the warehouse, detectives observed a box truck going there many times and were able to identify it as being registered to Attyah Computer Recycling of Ashburn.
“The driver of the truck would not exit the vehicle, nor provide the necessary paperwork required to receive auctioned goods,” said police. “Laptops and computer parts would be loaded into the truck, and the driver would leave. Through investigation, two warehouse employees were identified as facilitating the unlawful transactions.”
On the morning of July 14, detectives saw the truck arrive at the location, as usual. But this time, they conducted a traffic stop and allegedly found stolen laptops inside the vehicle. They arrested the driver, Atiyeh, and charged him with receiving stolen property and larceny with the intent to distribute.
Detectives determined that Atiyeh was employed by Attyah Computer Recycling. They then executed a search warrant at the business and recovered additional evidence.
Later that day, police also arrested two warehouse employees, Franque Minor II, 35, of Maryland, and Mario Jones Jr., 21, of Woodbridge. Both men – who were FCPS employees – were charged with embezzlement and larceny with the intent to distribute.
Meanwhile, detectives continue to comb through a significant amount of evidence to determine the extent of the embezzlement. They believe the offenses date back to November 2020.
Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call detectives at 703-256-8035. Tips may also be submitted anonymously via Crime Solvers by phoning 1-866-411-TIPS (866-411-8477).