By Ben Hall
They are multi-million dollar crimes that cost all of us money. Entire trucks, full of freight, stolen by well organized gangs.
Cargo thefts are on the rise here in Middle Tennessee and across the country.
A NewsChannel 5 investigation reveals weak penalties and big pay-offs for those involved only add to the growing problem.
Surveillance video from a Sumner County warehouse last October shows cargo thieves in action.
Professional burglars, wearing masks, dressed in black, disable the alarm system and take over the warehouse.
They load two stolen tractor trailers with more than $2 million of cigarettes.
"They actually cut a hole through the warehouse roof," said warehouse owner Crockett Parks.
The exclusive video obtained by NewsChannel5 Investigates shows that Parks' business was targeted by well organized thieves.
The burglars spent eight hours inside the warehouse and even used the company's own forklifts to load cigarettes onto the stolen tractor trailers.
"They'd done their homework," Parks said. "They'd been stalking us for a while I'm sure. They'd done this before."