A Union County, New Jersey, man today admitted his role in a conspiracy to steal and transport across state lines luxury cars stolen from towns in New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey.
Malik Baker, 29, of Vauxhall, New Jersey, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Esther Salas in Newark federal court to an information charging him with one count of conspiring to transport stolen vehicles in interstate commerce and one count of receiving a stolen vehicle that had crossed state lines after being stolen.
Baker’s conspirators – Hakeem Smith, Nafique Goodwyn, and Bilal Cureton – previously pleaded guilty to related charges. Smith was sentenced on April 25, 2023, to 41 months in prison. Sentencing is pending for Goodwyn and Cureton.
According to U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger, documents filed in this case and statements made in court, the defendants and others stole and conspired to steal at least 10 luxury cars from towns in New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey, and hid those cars at a location in Irvington, New Jersey since as early as July 2019.
The cars include a 2019 BMW X4 M40i, stolen from Greenwich, Connecticut, on July 19, 2019; a 2017 BMW Alpina, stolen from Hewlett Bay Park, New York, on July 22, 2019; a 2017 Maserati GranTurismo, stolen from Manalapan, New Jersey, on Aug. 5, 2019; a 2018 Range Rover and a 2019 Porsche Cayenne, stolen from New City, New York, on Aug. 6, 2019; a 2017 Mercedes S550 and a 2019 Rolls Royce, stolen from Hewlett Bay Park, New York, on Aug. 13, 2019; a 2019 Land Rover, stolen from Kensington, New York, on Aug. 22, 2019; a 2019 Mercedes Maybach, stolen from Quogue, New York, on Aug. 29, 2019; a 2014 Lexus GS, stolen from West Long Branch, New Jersey, on Aug. 29, 2019; a 2017 BMW M4, stolen from Marlton, New Jersey, on Sept. 7, 2019; and a 2017 Mercedes AMG S63, stolen from Orangeburg, New York, in September 2019.
The defendants often used the stolen cars to steal more cars, and, in one instance, they used a Maserati GranTurisimo they stole from Manalapan to steal a Range Rover and a Porsche Cayenne.
When law enforcement attempted to conduct a stop of the Maserati, the Maserati accelerated and crashed head-on into a police vehicle before the suspects fled the scene in another stolen vehicle.
Law enforcement recovered one of the stolen cars in a shipping container at the port in Newark en route to Ghana, Africa.
The charge of conspiracy to transport stolen vehicles is punishable by a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison.
The charge of receiving stolen vehicles is punishable by a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison.
Both charges are punishable by a fine up to $250,000, or twice the gross gain or loss from the offenses, whichever is greatest. Sentencing is scheduled for March 7, 2024.