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Police Arrest Alleged Play N' Trade Thief

Union City man reportedly got away with nearly $40,000 worth of merchandise

A man living in Union City was arrested this week for his role in an in the A&P Shopping Center on Franklin Turnpike, Police Chief James Batelli said. Roberto Cobian, 41, was arrested at his apartment and charged with burglary, theft and criminal mischief for his alleged involvement in the April 20 burglary in which three suspects got away with over $39,000 in merchandise, Batelli said.

Cobian was also charged with burglary and criminal mischief at the vacant shop next to the Play N’ Trade, which he allegedly used as a point of entry to the gaming store, Batelli said. Three “suspects initially entered through the vacant store and then gained access to the Play N' Trade store by crawling through a gap in the cinder block wall between the two stores. Once inside they disabled the store's burglar alarm,” he said.

According to police, the other two suspects in the burglary are believed to be no longer in the country. Immigrations and Custom Enforcement (ICE) agents were notified to investigate Cobain's status in this country, Batelli said.

The merchandise stolen from the store has not been recovered, Batelli said.

Corbain’s bail was set at $100,000. He was remanded to the Bergen County Jail in lieu of bail, police said.

Batelli said surveillance images from the Play N' Trade store, nearby businesses and technology from the helped lead to the arrest. However, Batelli credited an “extensive investigation” by Mahwah Police Officer Michael Grassi and Detective Kevin Hebert under the direction of Detective Lieutenant Martin Clancy, and the “dedicated and persistent police work by Officer Grassi,” with the arrest.

Have a question or a news tip? Email the editor Jessica Mazzola at jessica.mazzola@patch.com. Or, follow us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your email inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Leaking Ink June 01, 2012 at 12:55 PM
Great job by the police! Makes me proud to live in Mahwah.
Joe Glotzbier June 01, 2012 at 04:46 PM
Not at all surprised that these thieves were nabbed by our PD. Great job as always!
Leigha Stigman June 04, 2012 at 07:29 PM
Amazing! So happy to hear it as my husband is the manager of this store and put his heart and soul into running it and getting it off of its feet!!!!! He was absolutely devasted..so its nice to know that justice is being served!!!!

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