Family of 3 charged after allegedly stealing $1 million+ worth of cattle from La. markets

Family of 3 charged after allegedly stealing $1 million+ worth of cattle from La. markets

(WAFB) - A family of three has been arrested after reportedly stealing more than $1 million worth of cattle from public livestock markets across Louisiana.

In Allen Parish, Ricky, 68, and Wanda, 69, Thompson are charged with six counts of theft of property over $25,000. The pair turned themselves in to the Allen Parish Jail Friday after a grand jury indictment.

Justin Thompson, 39, who is the son of Ricky and Wanda, was taken into custody on Monday, June 4.

Investigators with the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Brand Commission say the thefts all took place between August and October of 2017. The initial indictment involves thefts from a livestock market in Allen Parish.

There are eight public livestock markets in Louisiana, and investigators say the Thompsons targeted four of them.

"The bottom line is the cattle producers were protected and received their money from the sale barn. However, the Thompsons never compensated the sale barn, so these businesses suffered significant financial losses," said Commissioner Mike Strain.

If convicted, the Thompsons face serious jail time. Bond was set at $60,000 each. Ricky and Wanda both bonded out of jail Friday afternoon. They will be taken to Avoyelles Parish for similar charges. Warrants have also been issued in East Baton Rouge and St. Landry parishes for thefts from markets in those parishes.

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