"water bottles"

Former Shift Supervisor Accused of Theft of Nearly 200 Pallets of Bottled Water

June 13, 2023
Stolen cases of water from Muhlenberg, Pa., Crossroads Beverage water bottling plant was sold to unauthorized stores, according to authorities.

Authorities in Berks County, Pa., have accused a former employee of the Crossroads Beverage water bottling plant in Muhlenberg Township of the theft of $28,700 worth of cases of bottled water, which he then illegally sold to individual grocery stores in Reading.

Security camera footage from the plant’s loading dock appears to capture Noel Solis Jr., a former shift supervisor, loading two to four pallets of cases of water onto unauthorized tractor-trailer trucks on numerous occasions between January and mid-May. Solis faces charges of conspiracy to commit theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property in Reading Central Court.

The investigation began in May, when the plant manager reported to authorities that bottled water produced at the plant was being sold illegally, having found cases of water in unauthorized stores with coding indicating they should have been delivered to retailers CVS, Aldi and Walgreens.

The security footage showed the tractor trailers driven by unidentified individuals would arrive at the facility, back up to the loading dock without checking into the office and await Solis, who appeared to be contacted by the driver via cell phone. Solis would then arrive, load the pallets onto the truck, and the truck would depart, again, without stopping at the shipping offices.

A total of 195 pallets were taken. The total value of the water was $28,700, according to local news reports on the investigation.

About the Author

Andy Hanacek | Senior Editor

Andy Hanacek has covered meat, poultry, bakery and snack foods as a B2B editor for nearly 20 years, and has toured hundreds of processing plants and food companies, sharing stories of innovation and technological advancement throughout the food supply chain. In 2018, he won a Folio:Eddie Award for his unique "From the Editor's Desk" video blogs, and he has brought home additional awards from Folio and ASBPE over the years. In addition, Hanacek led the Meat Industry Hall of Fame for several years and was vice president of communications for We R Food Safety, a food safety software and consulting company.

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