Depot employee indicted
May 14, 2013 — A federal grand jury returned a one-count indictment Thursday, May 9, charging Devon Gregory Biggs, 36, of Sparks, Nev., with theft of government property from the Sierra Army Depot in Herlong, Calif., United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.
According to court documents, Biggs was a civilian employee working at the army depot in Lassen County. He was employed in Warehouse 301, which is the initial receiving point for thousands of military items returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. Items being returned are packed in metal shipping containers by military personnel and shipped by truck and rail to Sierra Army Depot. Upon arrival at the depot, the containers are opened, their contents inventoried and then sorted for redistribution, declared excess to the Army's needs or sent to be recycled. In his position, Biggs had access to the items before they were inventoried and documented.
Depot commander Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Dexter said: “The vast majority of our employees are great Americans, enjoy coming to work and believe that what they are doing is for the good of the country. We are committed to fighting theft of government property and will investigate any criminal activity that would undermine our mission.”
According to the criminal complaint, on April 3, 2013, as a result of tips about Biggs’s activities, law enforcement officers had Biggs under surveillance. Officers saw Biggs leave Warehouse 301 in his truck, then return and transfer a black backpack and other items from his vehicle to the back of a government pickup truck. Officers approached Biggs and detained him for questioning. A search of the backpack revealed it contained sophisticated laser and thermal imaging equipment. Other items were recovered in the government pickup and in Biggs’s private vehicle. The total value of property recovered at the scene was more than $80,000.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Law Enforcement Division of the United States Army and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys Jean M. Hobler and Christiaan Highsmith are prosecuting the case.
Biggs was scheduled to be arraigned Friday, May 10.
If convicted, Biggs faces a maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.
The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
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