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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Third And Final Defendant Pleads Guilty To Stealing From Railroad Cars

CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Paul Krieger, 46, of Buffalo, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge John L. Sinatra, Jr. to breaking into and larceny from interstate carrier facilities. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura A. Higgins, who is handling the case, stated that on 10 dates in May and June 2018, the defendant and co-defendants Ray Chrostowski and Nicholas Birdwell went to the railyards in the vicinity of Broadway and Bailey Avenue in Buffalo, broke into railcars using a crowbar, bolt-cutters, and other tools, entered the cars, and stole property. The property included televisions, sound systems, microwaves, sneakers, liquor, tires and rims from vehicles, and UPS shipping parcels. On each occasion, Krieger directed Birdwell and Chrostowski regarding which railcar to enter, what property to remove, where to hide the stolen items, and the manner by which each should conduct themselves in order to conceal their conduct from the attention of law enforcement and railyard personnel.

• On June 8, 2018, the three defendants broke into a railcar carrying automobiles and removed the tires and rims from a 2018 Jeep and a 2018 Dodge.
• On June 22, 2018, the defendants stole approximately 20 cases (120 bottles) of Jefferson bourbon, and sold them for profit.
• On June 26, 2018, the defendants stole a 50-inch Samsung television.

Chrostowski and Birdwell were previously convicted and are awaiting sentencing.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia, and the CSX Police, under the direction of Chief Sean Douris.

Sentencing is scheduled for October 12, 2021, before Judge Sinatra.

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Updated June 15, 2021