STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — State Assemblyman Michael Cusick announced Thursday that Governor Cuomo has signed his bill, designed to combat organized retail crime.
"Organized retail theft has grown exponentially in the past decade," Cusick said at the Staten Island Mall. "My legislation gives the authorities the upper hand in prosecuting these crimes by allowing all charges to be heard in one venue."
Organized retail theft refers to a varitety of schemes that involve stolen and repackaged goods that are sold back into the marketplace and then moved across county and city lines in an effort to avoid prosecution.
These schemes cost United States retailers about $30 billion a year, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Cusick's bill is the first time the phrase "organized retail crime" will be featured in the New York State statute, and aims to make it easier for prosecutors to try these cases.
Several prominent retail and business leaders joined Cusick to praise the signing of the bill, including Michael Rosen of the Food Industry Alliance, who spoke about the dangers of retail thieves reselling food.
"Organized Retail Crime doesn't just involve business losses," Rosen said. "We applaud Assemblyman Cusick for taking a leadership role in pursuing this bill to protect consumers and retailers alike."
© 2016 SILive.com. All rights reserved.