An Amtrak employee from Ocean County was arrested Monday night for allegedly stealing over $50,000 worth of chainsaws and chainsaw parts from Amtrak and reselling them.

Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig says 48-year-old Jose Rodriguez of Brick has been charged with one count of theft from an agency receiving federal funds and one count of theft of government property.

According to Honig's office,

Rodriguez has been an Amtrak employee since October 2007, most recently as a senior engineer and repairman, based out of an Amtrak facility in North Brunswick, New Jersey. Between August 2016 and July 2020, Rodriguez obtained 77 chainsaws, 103 bars, and 163 chains from Amtrak, the total value of which was over $50,000. Rodriguez used an online auction service to sell most of the Amtrak chainsaws and parts to purchasers throughout the United States. Rodriguez also directly contacted one purchaser on multiple occasions offering to sell chainsaws and parts the day before or the same day that Rodriguez picked up chainsaws and parts from Amtrak. Agents recovered several chainsaws that Rodriguez sold, which had serial numbers matching Amtrak’s chainsaws. One of those chainsaws had previously been reported stolen by Amtrak.

If found guilty, Rodriguez could spend up to ten years in prison and pay up to a $250,000 fine.

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Rodriguez is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday afternoon.

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