Los Angeles police on Wednesday announced the arrest of a man suspected of burglarizing 13 victims in the Hollywood Hills, a number of them stars.
Benjamin Eitan Ackerman, 32, of Los Angeles was arrested after it was discovered in September that he allegedly had numerous high-price items reported stolen from the stars’ homes, Cdr. Cory Palka, head of the LAPD Hollywood division said during a media conference.
Among the more than 2,000 high-end items allegedly found in Ackerman’s possession included clothing, artwork, purses, jewelry and fine wines, Palka said. A number of the items were discovered in a storage unit that police said was rented to the suspect. The rest was allegedly in his home.
Palka noted so-far identified victims include Usher Raymond, Jason Derulo and Adam Lambert, among others.
“Ackerman targeted high-end celebrity homes that were for sale or were being shown during open house appointments,” Palka explained. “Ackerman would respond as an interested buyer or he would pose as real estate broker wanting to show the property.”
Investigators noted that the burglaries were sophisticated and involved surveillance videos being manipulated. Police also said the suspect may have had help pulling off the crimes.
The investigation is ongoing.
Ackerman is being held on $1 million bail, according to records.
Separate from the Ackerman case, toward the end of last year, 10 accused gang members were charged with allegedly breaking into numerous star homes and burglarizing them.
All 10 men are charged with criminal street gang conspiracy, along with counts of first-degree residential burglary, home invasion robbery, first-degree residential robbery and attempted burglary.
In those cases, authorities accused the men of going after high-profile targets when they knew the star or athlete would be out of town on business.
Victims involved in the Ackerman case can check whether their property was recovered by visiting hollywoodburglary.smugmug.com.
Watch the entire LAPD press conference below:
LIVE: LAPD Announces Arrest of Suspect in a Series of Celebrity/High-End Home Burglaries https://t.co/MzcZf5WxCb
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) January 2, 2019
A version of this article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.
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