Prison for Holley man who stole and buried construction equipment

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 27 January 2014 at 12:00 am

ALBION – A Holley man who pleaded guilty in November to criminal possession of stolen property and insurance fraud was sentenced to one to three years in state prison today, despite a request for probation from his attorney.

Jeffrey Paul, 40, apologized for his actions, when he teamed with his father David Paul to allegedly steal two backhoes, a box truck and a car. They admitted to burying some of it on David Paul’s property on the Monroe-Orleans Countyline Road.

Although he said he was influenced by his father to commit the crimes, “I have nobody to blame but myself,” Jeffrey Paul said at his sentencing.

His father was sentenced to a year in jail in January 2013. Jeffrey Paul’s case was delayed after he was sent to a psychiatric facility, which postponed his trial. He also switched attorneys before the trial was due to start. He pleaded guilty in November.

“I’ve never been more ashamed or embarrassed in my life,” Paul said in court today. “I haven’t been able to hold my head up high.”

He apologized for letting down his wife and two “wonderful stepchildren.”

Paul was treated for lung cancer after he was arrested. His attorney Larry Koss said an MRI has shown a new mass. He asked Judge James Punch to let Paul avoid prison and instead serve probation. Paul wants to try an experimental treatment.

District Attorney Joe Cardone sought incarceration for Paul.

Punch said Paul has convictions for crimes dating over two decades, “a long history involving fraud, theft, deception and lying.” To avoid prison would be “irresponsible,” Punch said.

He sentenced Paul to state prison, and ordered him to pay $41,650 in restitution. He gave Paul four years to pay that off. If it’s not paid, Paul could have another year added to his sentence, Punch said.

“You’ve clearly worked your way up to state prison with this one,” Punch said.