It took investigators working on Thursday’s snatch-and-grab – one that saw crooks drive away with two pallets of iPad minis worth $1.9 million – less than 24 hours to nab a suspect, a JFK Airport worker.

As Ed told you, two unidentified individuals used the airport’s own forklift to load the iPads onto their truck just before midnight Monday. The thieves operated in the same cargo area where director Martin Scorsese filmed a Lufthansa flight heist in the 1978 mob flick “GoodFellas”.

The Bureau was able to apprehend airport worker Renel Rene Richardson on the grounds that he made suspicious inquiries to co-workers about the gadget shipment and where forklifts might be found. What a “Dumbfella”…

He acted as a lookout.

Richardson had two accomplices at the Cargo Air Services building, where he also worked, the investigation has determined.

These unidentified individuals loaded two pallets of iPads onto a truck and drove away “after another worker confronted them”.

New York Post has more info:

After the FBI arrested him, Richardson accompanied the Port Authority detectives on Wednesday night as they searched Long Island for the truck, law-enforcement sources said.

The article doesn’t mention whether the devices have been recovered.

Although the crooks snatched two pallets with 3,600 iPad minis from China and destined for U.S. buyers, they left three more loads likely to have held even more of Apple’s newest tablets.

Place your bets now: will the FBI find the crooks?