Argentina seizes costly film equipment stolen from Hollywood

PHOTO: Police stand next to stolen film equipment during a media presentation at the police department in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.Natacha Pisarenko/AP
Police stand next to stolen film equipment during a media presentation at the police department in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.

Argentine authorities said Friday that they had seized about $3 million in cameras, lenses and other film equipment stolen in Hollywood and New York.

Security Minister Patricia Bullrich said that officials worked in conjunction with the FBI, the New York Police Department and the U.S. Embassy in Buenos Aires in the operation called "Hollywood Stolen."

PHOTO: Stolen film equipment is displayed for a media presentation at the police department in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.Natacha Pisarenko/AP
Stolen film equipment is displayed for a media presentation at the police department in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.

PHOTO: Seized film equipment is displayed during a press conference in Buenos Aires, Sept. 14, 2018.Eitan Abramovich/AFP via Getty Images
Seized film equipment is displayed during a press conference in Buenos Aires, Sept. 14, 2018.

Argentina's Federal Police said in a statement that it became aware of an NYPD investigation related to the matter two years ago.

Police said they then collaborated to infiltrate the film production underworld and follow suspects, tap their phones and film their movements until they found the equipment that had been reported stolen in the U.S.

PHOTO: Seized film equipment is displayed during a press conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.Eitan Abramovich/AFP via Getty Images
Seized film equipment is displayed during a press conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.

Authorities said they carried out 10 raids on Thursday and were able to break up a criminal gang that stole the equipment from Hollywood producers and rented it on the black market to companies for the production of movies and TV commercials in Argentina.

Dozens of cases with costly cameras marked with the word "seized," as well as tripods, lights and other professional film equipment were displayed at a news conference in the capital of Buenos Aires.

Argentine Federal Police Chief Nestor Roncaglia said 17 people are being investigated.

PHOTO: Seized film equipment is shown after police dismantled a criminal band accused of selling millions of dollars of equipment stolen from Hollywood studios, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.Agustin Marcarian/Reuters
Seized film equipment is shown after police dismantled a criminal band accused of selling millions of dollars of equipment stolen from Hollywood studios, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 14, 2018.

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