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Tampa construction thefts lead to major stolen property bust

3:43 PM, Feb 21, 2014   |    comments
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Tampa, Florida -- While investigating recent construction site thefts of steel re-bar, detectives discovered the thief was a foreman at a construction supply company.

Hillsborough County Detectives were investigating a theft of an unusually large amount of steel re-bar (618,000lbs.) over the course of the last year. Further investigation revealed that the main suspect, Paul Barton, was a foreman for Southwestern Suppliers, a construction supply company.

HCSO detectives contacted Southwestern Suppliers and discovered that Barton was stealing steel re-bar and selling it as scrap metal at O.U. Metals.

Over the last year Barton and his associates conducted a total of 245 transactions and received in excess of $120,000. The retail value of the materials as approximately $400,000. 

Barton, Robert Head, Mike Barber and Troy Roberts were each charged with multiple counts of Grand Theft, Defrauding a Metal Recycler, and Dealing in Stolen Property.

Detectives discovered the theft before the business was aware of it.  

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