Federal authorities are warning airports across the western region and beyond that a Bakersfield man arrested in December of 2016 and charged in connection with theft and attempted thefts of numerous aircraft has posted bond. They warn he and or his associates may still be targeting area airports.
The advisory indicates the accused name is Robert Edwin Piper pictured above, who uses several aliases (Robert Roper, Robert Cox, Bob Walter, Wayne Roper, Leonard Phillips) and who has also been connected to similar theft related activities in Washington and Arizona as well.
Piper was actually convicted of similar conduct in Arizona according to the FBI (case# CR20143210001,) who also allege that between August of 2015 and October of 2016, Piper fraudulently used businesses he operated to file erroneous liens against derelict (or perceived to be abandoned) aircraft in a way that would enable him to fraudulently obtain ownership and subsequently facilitate the sale of the properties.
As a condition of his release, Piper has been forbidden for visiting any airport for any reason and may not become engaged in or involved in any way with the negotiations or sale any aircraft.
Aircraft owners and local airport users should be aware of his presence and notify authorities immediately if they recognize him engaging in any airport related activities. Piper is known to work with others in the scheme as well. Unauthorized access to or tampering with any general aviation aircraft is a federal offense. All suspicious or questionable activities should be reported immediately to airport management and local law enforcement.
Witnesses who recognize this individual at ANY airport engaged in the activities described above should report that information to: FBI Special Agent Paul Sanchez (310-477-6565,) FAA Special Agent Craig Burns (602-721-6091)
View a snapshot of the released notice here.