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Mahwah Police Make Quick Arrest In FedEx Route 17 Burglary

Gawad Dalia
Gawad Dalia Photo Credit: MUGSHOT: Courtesy MAHWAH PD

MAHWAH, N.J. -- Moving swiftly, Mahwah police stopped and arrested a Hudson County man moments after they said he swiped $1,600 worth of parcels from a Federal Express lot on Route 17.

The burglary call came in at 6:15 p.m. Thursday, Police Chief James Batelli said: A FedEx employee said a suspicious U-Haul van sped from the lot.

Officer William Hunt reviewed surveillance video that showed the bandit breaking into a truck and then a cargo bay, removing several packages, the chief said.

Soon after, Lt. Scott Cherven stopped the U-Haul on the southbound highway headed into Ridgewood.

The driver, 31-year-old Gawad M. Dalia of North Bergen, told him and Detective Michael Grassi that he was "in the process of moving," Batelli said.

The van was empty -- but Dalia admitted to Grassi that he "first pried a lock on the back of a tractoro-trailer located at Pilot Truck Stop and then proceeded to the Federal Express facility, where he broke a truck window to look inside for any packages.

"He then entered the rear of the building through bay doors and quickly removed several parcels."

Dalia dumped the parcels -- which contained mostely map books, medical devices and auto parts -- in a trash bin in Ridgewood just before he was stopped, the chief said.

A pry bar was also recovered, he said.

Dalia was ordered held on $25,000 bail in the Bergen County Jail, charged with three counts of burglary, two of criminal mischief and one each of theft and possession of burglary tools.

Batelli said it's possible that other trucks in the area may have been burglarized, as well. He asked that anyone with information that could help the investigation call Grassi: (201) 529-1000, ext. 216 .

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