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Charges laid after charity and Vancouver businesses hit by thief

Vancouver police crack computer thefts case

VANCOUVER — A 35-year-old Vancouver man has been arrested and charged with several offences following break-ins that targeted a well-known charity and three businesses in the city.

The Vancouver Police Department says Matthew Barber was arrested Jan. 14 in neighbouring Richmond after an investigation that began before Christmas.

A release from the department says the probe began Dec. 22 when a video-game development studio in Vancouver was robbed of more than $100,000 of property, including computers.

Information from other crimes in the area suggested one person was responsible for all the offences, but the case wasn't cracked until Jan. 12 when laptops and a safe were stolen from the B.C. Professional Fire Fighters' Burn Fund office.

Surveillance video from that heist helped police identify a suspect from the previous break-ins and also showed a stolen Mercedes SUV leaving the area.

Police located the vehicle two days later and arrested the driver who remains in custody facing 10 charges including break and enter, possession of property obtained by crime and mischief. 

The Canadian Press