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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Oklahoma

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Arkansas Man Must Pay $25,000 After Conviction for Interstate Transportation of Stolen Property

OKLAHOMA CITY – BRANDON BYRGE, 29, of Texarkana, Arkansas, has been sentenced to two years of probation and ordered to pay $25,000 for interstate transportation of stolen property, announced Robert J. Troester of the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

On June 5, 2018, a federal grand jury charged Byrge with transporting two drill bits from Oklahoma to Arkansas when he knew they had been stolen, converted, and taken by fraud.  According to the indictment, the two bits were worth approximately $39,000.

Byrge pleaded guilty on August 6, 2018.

On February 26, 2019, U.S. District Judge Scott L. Palk sentenced Byrge to two years of probation and ordered him to pay $20,000 in restitution and a fine of $5,000.  On March 5, the court amended its judgment by ordering that of the $20,000 in restitution, $18,000 go to Smith International, Inc., of Sugar Land, Texas, and $2,000 go to Bayless Sales & Services of Weatherford, Oklahoma.  These amounts reflect the costs to the companies of temporarily not having access to the drill bits, which ultimately were recovered.

This case is the result of an investigation by the FBI Major Theft Task Force, which consists of the FBI, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, and the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward J. Kumiega prosecuted the case.

Reference is made to public filings for further information.

Updated March 6, 2019