San Jose police arrest suspects connected to Romanian organized crime: Here's what you need to know

Lauren Martinez Image
Saturday, November 11, 2023
SJPD arrest suspects connected to Romanian organized crime
San Jose police are seeing a large increase in Romanian organized crime. Officers arrested two suspects they say are connected to 25 separate crimes.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- San Jose police say the city is seeing a large increase in Romanian organized crime.

On Wednesday, police arrested two suspects they say are connected to approximately 25 separate crimes - they include armed carjacking, armed robbery, jewelry robberies and Facebook Marketplace scams.

Police released these photos of evidence they believe are connected to the crimes that spanned from July to October.

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ABC7 reached out to Bob Delaney, a former New Jersey State Police trooper who infiltrated Italian mob families in the 1970's.

"This is a system that's in place within that criminal group, and so for law enforcement to be able to stop it is difficult because it's ongoing," Delaney said.

Delaney went undercover for three years back then, which helped lead to the arrests of 29 people connected to organized crime.

"So two or three more people conspiring to commit a crime gives the technical version. But there's much more to it. There's a structure and many times, law enforcement, from my view, gives them more credit they're not as organized as we think."

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Bodycam video shows the aftermath of a California jewelry heist that went down in the middle of the night.

Delaney says though organized crime may not be as sophisticated as we think, the criminals are innovative.

San Jose police say the suspects are targeting elderly members of the Asian and Indian community.

Police say a group of men and women in a car or SUV will ask for directions, engage in a conversation and thank the victim - while slyly taking their jewelry and replacing it with fakes.

MORE: 2nd 15-year-old suspect arrested in SJ hit-and-run crash that killed pregnant woman, baby: police

San Jose police said Wednesday a second teen has been arrested in connection with a hit-and-run crash that killed a pregnant woman and her baby.

San Jose police also said Romanian organized criminal suspects have posed as general contractors, roofers or plumbers.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the San Jose Police Department's Robbery Unit.

"The more that we takeoff layers of people within that organization it keeps that organizations disorganized, and it doesn't allow it to have a strong hold in a community," Delaney said.

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