More than one-million dollars of Cat equipment stolen

Sep 17, 2013

Two people are being charged with stealing what’s believed to be more than one-million dollars in Caterpillar equipment. East Peoria police say 50-year old John Peters of East Peoria and 35-year old Eliot Wells of Peoria are at the Tazewell County Jail for burglary and theft of more than 100-thousand dollars in materials.

Affidavits provided by the Tazewell County State’s Attorney’s office say Caterpillar Security discovered stolen items on Ebay by a specific seller. That account was linked to John Peters who worked for the company as a contracted employee. A search warrant of Peters’ home recovered about 300-thousand dollars of Cat property. East Peoria Police also found about 485-thousand dollars of equipment had been sold online.

Peters reportedly admitted to stealing and selling Cat items during a police interview. He’s told police he sold the Cat parts over three years until he was fired in February. Caterpillar employee, Eliot Wells, helped with the thefts for half the profits over the last 18-months.

A statement from the company says it’s working with the appropriate authorities in the ongoing investigation into the incident.