Crime

Jewelry Factory Supervisor Arrested for Allegedly Stealing Precious Metals

CrimeMar 19, 2024

Jewelry Factory Supervisor Arrested for Allegedly Stealing Precious Metals

The man was charged with money laundering in connection with the theft of gold, silver, and platinum over the course of three years.

Stock image of a gavel and handcuffs
A manufacturing supervisor for a luxury jewelry company was arrested last week and charged with money laundering after allegedly stealing gold, silver, and platinum from the company.
Boston—A manufacturing supervisor for an unnamed luxury jewelry company was arrested last week for allegedly stealing precious metals from the company’s factory in Rhode Island.

Benjamin Preacher, 54, of North Attleboro, Massachusetts, was charged with money laundering in connection with the theft of gold, silver, and platinum from the company over a period of more than three years, according to a March 15 release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Massachusetts.

He was charged by criminal complaint with one count of engaging in unlawful monetary transactions and was released on conditions following an appearance in federal court in Boston that same day. 

Preacher worked as a full-time employee in a supervisory position at the company’s Rhode Island manufacturing facility since 2018.

Though court documents never name the jewelry company, a LinkedIn profile for a man named Benjamin Preacher of North Attleboro lists him as a lean manufacturing supervisor for Tiffany & Co. in Cumberland, Rhode Island.

Tiffany & Co. did not respond when asked if Preacher worked for the company. 

 Related stories will be right here … 

Court documents allege that Preacher used his position to steal gold, silver, and platinum from the facility and then sold the metals to various businesses in Massachusetts. 

From around March 2020 to March 2023, he allegedly sold precious metals to a Canton, Massachusetts-based metals dealer about one to two times per month, as per the release, with sales to that dealer totaling more than $1 million.

Preacher’s sales of stolen metals allegedly included $50,521 in 18-karat gold in March 2020; $21,821 in 18-karat gold, platinum scrap and sterling silver in April 2021; and $30,939 in platinum in January 2022. 

It is also alleged that he sold more than $177,000 in stolen precious metals to a separate metals dealer in West Bridgewater, Massachusetts, between May 16 and Nov. 16 of last year. 

These alleged sales included gold sheets used by Preacher’s employer in a particular machine. He allegedly stole some of the sheets and sold them, along with other gold scrap, for nearly $21,000.

The most recent incident was documented on March 1, according to court papers. 

Preacher was allegedly seen on company security cameras stealing a piece of white gold flat stock, measuring approximately an inch in diameter and approximately as thick as a quarter, valued at roughly $2,200. 

During a search of his home on March 14, precious metal scraps were found.

The charge of unlawful monetary transactions could lead to a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000 or twice the amount of the laundered funds. 

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kriss Basil of the Securities, Financial & Cyber Fraud Unit is prosecuting the case. 

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