Kern County deputies arrest man they say tried stealing $100,000 in almonds

WASCO, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) A truck driver was arrested Thursday on suspicion of trying to steal $100,000 worth of almonds from a Wasco grower.

Inland Container Express made a contract with a company to transport the Sunny Gem almonds to North Carolina.

That freight broker grew suspicious when the fraudulent company turned in paperwork with a list of fake numbers.

"We immediately noticed some things that weren't correct on it, and further investigated it to find out that the company was not who they said they were, stealing the identity of a legit trucking company," an Inland Container Express employee told Eyewitness News on Friday in anonymity.

Inland Container Express and Sunny Gem contacted the Kern County Sheriff's Office, and deputies set up a sting operation at Sunny Gem.

Deputies met the transport driver, who they found to have a fake driver's license, fake immigration documents, fake company emblems on his truck, and a stolen license plate on his trailer.

The deputies arrested the driver, Francisco Javier Lopez Martinez.

"One got caught, and we're gonna catch all that we can. Don't think that we're an easy company to hit," said Sunny Gem spokesman Andrew Murry.