Crazy Crimes: Software Executive Forges Barcodes to Buy Legos

Here at 1-800-BAIL-BOND, we like to find crazy stories about crimes and criminals. These involve the most bizarre motives, circumstances, and punishments that we can find.

In this week’s edition, a Silicon Valley software executive and vice president of global software company SAP named Thomas Langenbach was charged with forging barcodes in order to buy discounted Legos.


Yes, that entire paragraph was accurate. Just to show how crazy it is, lets break it down.

  • The criminal is a 47-years-old VP of a software company that is worth millions of dollars whose crime is…
  • Stealing thousands of boxes of Legos…
  • By counterfeiting bar codes stickers so he could…
  • Sell the Legos on eBay, netting around $30,000 in around a year.

Target became aware of the serial Lego theft in April, identified Langenbach as the suspect, and spread photos of him to local outlets. On May 8th, he was arrested by Mountain View police.

The motive remains unclear. It is obvious that Langenbach enjoyed building Lego structures, but he also had the money to buy as many Lego sets as he wanted.

The time, effort, and money he invested into counterfeiting barcodes is baffling and certainly not worth the $30,000 eBay profit he made, which is only a fraction of his yearly income.

A more complex motivation must be at work. Although this is only speculation, it would appear that Langenbach enjoys the act of committing the crime. Like Winona Ryder a few years ago, some criminals don’t care as much about what they are doing as opposed to the thrill of getting away with doing something illegal.

Still, if that was the case, why not expand his thievery beyond Legos? Unless further evidence comes to light that he actually was stealing more valuable items via the same methods, this will have to be stashed in the crazy crimes file.

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