March 5 An Illinois couple and their daughter on
Wednesday were charged with operating a multimillion-dollar
shoplifting ring that involved stealing toys, baby supplies and
household items from retail stores and selling them on eBay,
Branko Bogdanov, 58, along with his wife Lela, 52, and
daughter Julia, 34, of Northbrook, some 25 miles (40 km) north
of Chicago, were charged in U.S. District Court with interstate
transportation of stolen property, the U.S. Attorney's office
said in a statement.
According to investigators, the trio stole items such as
American Girl dolls, Furby toys, Lego blocks, baby monitors and
steak knives from an array of retailers such as Barnes & Noble,
Dillard's and Toys"R"Us during the last decade.
The trio shoplifted $7.1 million worth of items from stores
in several U.S. states including Florida, Maryland, Tennessee
and Oklahoma, according to prosecutors.
Investigators say Lela Bogdanov allegedly stuffed items up a
long black skirt that was outfitted with a lining capable of
holding multiple objects.
Her husband and daughter would create diversions that would
allow her to flee before she could be apprehended by store
security or police, prosecutors said.
The family members, with the help from an outside person who
acted as a fence, sold the items through merchant accounts on
eBay, the online auction site, prosecutors said.
They made some $4.2 million over the last 10 years,
according to prosecutors.
The ring was nabbed after theft prevention staff at the
retail chains worked with eBay to determine items that had been