Alberta police are on the lookout for a couple of bandits who made off with some hot tubs and $230,000 worth of beef in two separate heists.
In a plot that seems ripped straight from an episode of the Trailer Park Boys, an unmarked semi pulled up to the JBS meatpacking factory in Brooks, a small town two hours east of Calgary, on the morning of August 30. According to police, a tall, heavyset, balding man got out and identified himself as a trucker for the company “Transport Pascal Charland” from Chateauguay, Quebec. He was pulling a large refrigerated trailer and he was there for some beef.
Well, he was given the beef.
The thing is, though, Transport Pascal Charland doesn’t exist and police said the driver was using fake documentation.
According to a police statement, the meatpackers were expecting to load up a shipment of assorted beef destined for the U.S. It wasn’t until the receivers down south reported they hadn’t gotten the beef that the meatpackers realized some meaty trickery was afoot.
But “Transport Pascal Charland” wasn’t done there, because what’s some beef without a little heat?
Three days later, on September 2, an unmarked white semi made its way to a hot tub manufacturing plant in Thorsby, Alberta—a small town about an hour south of Edmonton, and four hours north of Brooks. The driver, who based on the police description is different from the one who allegedly stole the meat, told the workers he was with Transport Pascal Charland and was there for some tubs.
The man—who police described as 30-40 years old, 5’6”, and heavyset with short brown hair and an unshaven face—was loaded up with seven Arctic Spas: the Ocean, Totem, Tundra (two of them), Yukon, Aurora, and Fox models. While Arctic Spas doesn’t list how expensive its hot tubs are on its website, prices found on third-party seller sites show they’re easily sold for over $10,000 and sometimes can push $20,000.
Speaking to the Canadian Press, Cpl. Robert Harms of Brooks RCMP said that police are looking to see if the two crimes are connected.
“There’s definitely some similarities,” he said.
Meat thefts aren’t that uncommon. Earlier this year, police in Peterborough, Ontario, charged two men who reportedly stole $45,000 worth of meat from a local butcher shop. Grocery stores across the country claim that people routinely steal meat—sometimes by filling up a whole shopping cart and brazenly walking out the door. Stolen meat is typically resold on the black market to businesses wholesale or online.
Hot tub heists though... they’re a little rarer than the beef.
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