Former Alliance Ground International employee sentenced for stealing

Photo: Freedomz/ Shutterstock

A former Alliance Ground International (AGI) employee has been sentenced to 12 months in federal prison for stealing from a shipment passing through Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

The US Department of Justice (DOT) said in a press release on June 27 that Los Angeles-based Marlon Moody, who was handed the sentence for stealing four gold bars that were part of a larger shipment headed from Australia to New York, was also ordered to pay a fine of $7,500.

Moody pleaded guilty in July 2021 to one count of conspiracy to commit theft of an interstate or foreign shipment.

A co-defendant, Brian Benson, also of Los Angeles, also pleaded guilty in July 2021 to the same charge.

Benson served a four-month prison sentence for the crime he committed in this case.

AGI said in a statement on May 27: “The employees upon confirming participation in the theft were immediately terminated by Alliance Ground International.”

The DOT explained: “On the evening of April 22, 2020, a shipment of gold bars arrived at LAX on Singapore Airlines. A total of 2,000 gold bars, each weighing one kilogram and valued at approximately $56,000, were being shipped at the direction of a Canadian bank.

“During a stopover at LAX, the gold was offloaded and secured, but an inventory that evening showed one box containing 25 gold bars was missing.

“Moody found the missing box of gold bars near the Singapore Airlines cargo warehouse on the morning of April 23, placed the box on a belt loader and drove that vehicle to a nearby location, where he removed four of the bars.

“Soon after, Benson arrived to pick up Moody in a company van, where they exchanged text messages about the gold bars because other employees were in the van. The two defendants later left the airport and went to a nearby parking lot, where Moody gave Benson one of the four gold bars.

“The lost box with the 21 remaining gold bars was discovered by other cargo handlers later on April 23, and authorities began an investigation that ultimately led to Moody and Benson.”

AGI added that the ramp supervisors contacted LAX police after realising some of the gold bars were missing.

The DOT stated: “Moody gave one gold bar to a relative on May 4 “and directed the family member to exchange the gold bar for a vehicle and/or money,” according to court documents.

“Around this time, Moody buried the remaining two gold bars in the backyard of his residence.”

The FBI recovered all four gold bars approximately two weeks after they went missing from LAX.

AGI added that all FBI legal requests were met and the company fully cooperated in bringing the suspects directly to the FBI for questioning.

“Through the efforts of local law enforcement stakeholders, LAWA police and the FBI, this investigation was a success. AGI played a vital role in the theft recovery and the apprehension of the suspects through immediate communication and accountability to LAWA and its stakeholders,” said the company.

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Rebecca Jeffrey

Rebecca Jeffrey
New to aviation journalism, I joined Air Cargo News in late 2021 as deputy editor. I previously worked for Mercator Media’s six maritime sector magazines as a reporter, heading up news for Port Strategy. Prior to this, I was editor for Recruitment International (now TALiNT International). Contact me on: [email protected]