Seattle police used a Baby Yoda Lego set to take down a shoplifting scheme allegedly orchestrated by a local thrift shop owner who trafficked in thousands of dollars worth of stolen Legos.
Mark Brady, 67, owner of Rummage Around, was arrested last week for allegedly running a network of shoplifters, who would go out into neighboring stores in Seattle to steal items Brady could sell at his store.
The Lego ring was busted after an undercover detective sold a 1,073-piece Lego set to Brady, only after telling the owner it was stolen, the Seattle Police Department said.
Brady 'was most likely directing … prolific shoplifters to steal property from retail stores for his own benefit of buying them at extremely low prices and reselling them to others,' Seattle police said in their report.
The Seattle Police Department found thousands of dollars worth of stolen goods, including 171 Lego sets, at the Rummage Around thrift shop, in Seattle
Police tracked down the stolen good's to Seattle's Pike Place Market, pictured
Brady denies any wrong doing and was released from jail earlier this week as he awaits trial, The Washington Post reports.
'I do want to fight this,' he said, adding that he plans to set up a GoFundMe to pay for his legal expenses.
Investigators began looking into Brady back in July, when employees of an Amazon brick-and-mortar store first contacted police about a wave of thefts plaguing the area.
Police said a brazen robber would walk into the store and grab specific items, and then just walk out without even hiding their actions.
One of the shoplifters included a 32-year-old man who stole more than $10,000 worth of merchandise, focusing heavily on Star Wars products.
A breakthrough in the case came in early September when one of the Amazon employees spotted one their stolen products up for sale at Brady's Rummage Around, in Seattle's Pike Place Market.
A security guard for the Amazon store followed up and told police 'they 100 per cent have our stuff,' noting that some of the items still had the Amazon tags on them.
A police detective began looking into Brady and his store, and at one point spotted the prolific 32-year-old shoplifter selling a Lego set to Brady.
Rummage Around owner Mark Brady denies the allegations that he orchestrated the shoplifting ring and bought stolen goods from his competitors
Rummage around features a vast assortment of secondhand products, with Star Wars merch being among the most popular
Detectives went undercover in the store to sell 'stolen' good to Brady, who accepted them and told the officers where to steal more, police said
The investigation bore fruit when detectives sold a Baby Yoda lego set, pictured, to Brady
Police said they then moved to dismantle Brady's alleged operation 'brick by brick,' using a Baby Yoda Lego set they dubbed, 'The Child.'
One of the detectives used the $80 toy outfitted to look like it was stolen from a store to approach Brady and offer it to him, with the caveat that it was stolen.
'You want any of this?' the detective asked.
'Let's do this in the corner,' police said Brady replied.
Brady allegedly complained about the security tags and locks ensnaring the product, but said he could cut it off. Police said he appeared understanding when the detective told him he 'boosted' it from the Amazon store.
Brady then gave the detective instructions on what kind of Lego sets he liked and where he could steal them, police said, adding that he knew where the stores' cameras would be.
Police followed up with another sale, with Brady allegedly telling the detective that he could do with 'more of the same.'
Following the undercover sales, police finally arrested Brady and seized the stolen goods, including 171 Lego sets. The Amazon store at the center of the investigation found that at least 34 of the sets belonged to them.
Brady told the Post that his life has been 'miserable' as he faces charges of first-degree trafficking in stolen property, a felony that carries multiple years in prison as a maximum punishment.
'I mean, come on, that scares me,' he said.