EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

June 26, 2013

AG: Merrimack Valley ring responsible for ATM breaks, other thefts


On April 9, 2012, McNeil pleaded guilty in Worcester Superior Court to various charges and was sentenced to one year in the House of Correction, with three years of probation concurrent with his sentence.

Ten of the defendants are from Lawrence; two from Haverhill and the rest from Methuen, Dracut, Lowell and Pepperell. Four of them are women.

The guilty pleas were made over the last 21 months stemming from the investigation that began in March, 2007.

The 16 were charged in March of 2011 for their involvement in an ongoing scheme to commit numerous burglaries and break-ins across the state, including the robbery of $340,000 in cash from several ATMs.

Investigators discovered that Caraballo, and associates Michael Vasquez, Wilson Martinez, and Feliciano Colon — all from Lawrence — broke into an electronics store in upper New York and then, using two stolen delivery vans, transported the goods back to the Lawrence area where they intended to sell the items in Massachusetts, according to Coakley’s office.

The investigation revealed that Caraballo, Velasquez and Juan Rosa, also from Lawrence — burglarized banks and businesses in Massachusetts. They often used their friends or girlfriends as lookouts.

They broke into ATM vaults several ways, including the use of a cutting torch and the attempted use of a circular power saw.

ATMs in Brookline, Acton, Bedford, and Tyngsboro were successfully broken into by members of the group, while failed attempts were made in Amherst, Gardner, Fitchburg and Whately. Caraballo and his associates also broke into businesses in Dedham, Fitchburg and Leominster.

“The convictions we have obtained were the result of countless hours of diligent, painstaking investigative work combined with a commitment to bring these people to justice. It is rewarding to us and, we hope, also to the banks and people who were victimized, to announce these convictions, Colonel Timothy P. Alben, superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police, said in a statement.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Merrimack Valley

Eagle-Tribune News Videos
Photos of the Week