New York-based Vice News reporter Alex Castellanos died Sunday afternoon, a day after he wrote an article about the Walmart warehouse in San Jose, California, which is now under investigation by the FBI.
The article, published Sunday, noted that “it’s a big deal that they have so much space in warehouses that the FBI says they need to keep up with demand.”
It was titled “The Warehouse That Can’t Keep Up.”
Castellans article was published Tuesday, one day after the FBI raided the warehouse and charged three people with racketeering and conspiracy in connection with the alleged theft and destruction of $4.5 million worth of Amazon products.
He was a reporter at Vice News, the parent company of Vice News.
In an emailed statement, Vice President of News and Production Katie Schmalz said that Castellanas death is a tragic loss for Vice News and its community.
He leaves behind a family of four.
“Alex was a very talented writer, and his talent and commitment to journalism was infectious,” Schmals said.
“He was always a kind person, and a caring person.
His wife and family are devastated.
Alex was a husband and father, a husband, a son, a brother, and I will forever treasure his words.
He will be missed.”
The warehouse that the undercover agents raided in San Francisco was not a Walmart warehouse.
Walmart did not respond to a request for comment from Vice News for this story.
“We’re extremely sad and shocked to hear of the passing of Alex Castella, a former Vice News Vice News staffer who wrote about a warehouse in the Bay Area that was not part of a Walmart facility, but that has been seized and is being investigated for theft and conspiracy to commit racketeering,” said Schmal, who also serves as Vice News’ Executive Vice President and Managing Editor.
“The article that he wrote about this warehouse was a true story about the problems of the warehouse, its people, and the challenges facing the company.
He had a strong voice for the truth in our community and his career.
We have been in contact with the family and the investigative team at the FBI, and we will provide all the resources we can to help.
He would be missed by so many.”
The article in question, which Castellanes co-wrote with a partner, describes a warehouse located at the intersection of Mission and Castro streets in San Mateo County, which was raided by undercover agents in late February and March.
The warehouse was home to a warehouse of sorts, with a large warehouse in front of it, as well as a smaller warehouse behind it.
A video shot by undercover agent Nick Chalk shows what the agents were able to steal, including boxes of boxes of goods, as they moved through the warehouse.
Chalk said that the warehouse was full of boxes, and it took “a couple of hours to clear out” the boxes.
“They didn’t even bother to do the paperwork,” Chalk told Vice News in an email.
“What the agents did was they went into the warehouse with a bunch of boxes and said, ‘What you got here is the stuff we’re going to take out.’
They were like, ‘Here, take it out.
And they took a couple of boxes off the top of the box that was inside and moved on.”
After the raid, the warehouse’s management contacted the FBI and asked for assistance in removing the contents of the boxes from the warehouse to get them to a secure location, according to a criminal complaint.
A warehouse employee told agents that he had not seen the boxes for about two months, according the complaint.
At some point, an employee in charge of the storage unit told the warehouse employee to bring a truck with a trailer to remove the boxes, the complaint said.
The affidavit in support of the criminal complaint said that during the search, agents “identified a large box of merchandise that they had removed from the front of the store and placed into the back of the truck.”
When the boxes were taken, the affidavit said, “they were unreadable, and no identifying marks were visible.”
The affidavit said that one of the employees was not even aware that the boxes had been removed from their boxes.
One of the warehouses managers told agents they had done nothing wrong.
“At no time did we see any indication that the items were stolen, that they were tampered with or that they are in any way in the custody of the government,” the warehouse manager told the undercover agent.
The FBI was not immediately available for comment.
Vice News did not immediately respond to multiple requests for comment Sunday afternoon.
“I’m not going to lie to you.
It was very upsetting,” Chalker told Vice.
“There was a lot of anger, but I don’t know how to describe it.
It’s like I was in the middle of a funeral.”
The FBI is investigating the warehouse as part of an ongoing investigation into Walmart’s warehouse business.