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WHAT: Three defendants believed to be responsible for a string of 25 burglaries in the South Tampa area have been arrested.


WHEN: The arrests occurred August 17, 2016


WHERE: Two of the defendants were arrested in Miami Dade. One was arrested in Manatee County.



Leyanet Morales-Torres, 24 (DOB: 9-28-1991) (Morales-Torres is female.)

900 NE 18th Ave Apt 9

Homestead, FL

Charges: Fraudulent use of a credit card, grand theft (3 counts), False info to pawn broker (2 counts).


Alejandro Blanco-Poza, 26 (DOB: 6-24-1990)

900 NE 18th Ave Apt 9

Homestead, FL

Charges: Grand theft, Driving while license suspended, and credit card/forgery/intent to defraud.


Diego Perera, 25 (DOB: 3-24-1991)

3675 35th Ave NE,

Naples, FL

Charges: Burglary (2 counts), Grand theft (2 counts)


DETAILS: The trio is believed to be responsible for 25 burglaries in the South Tampa area dating back to late March. In most of the burglaries, expensive jewelry was taken, though the burglars also took other items. They also took other items of value, and it was the use of a stolen credit card that provided Tampa Police the lead they needed to identify the suspects.


Morales-Torres and Blanco-Poza were in possession of numerous pieces of jewelry at the time of their arrest in South Florida. Tampa Police are still working to identify additional jewelry in their possession. 


Perera was identified from home surveillance video taken from two South Tampa area homes. That video was widely publicized in local media and through Crime Stoppers in the Tampa Bay area, but since the suspects were not from the area the video did not lead to identification. After a credit card stolen from a South Tampa home was used in South Florida, Tampa Police started focusing efforts in South Florida. All three defendants are facing charges in South Florida and in Tampa. 


Additional charges are likely as the investigation continues.