Man Gets 6 Months for Oscar Theft


Friday, July 7th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6


LOS ANGELES (AP) — The trucker accused of stealing 55 Oscar statuettes just weeks before the Academy Awards pleaded no contest to a count of grand theft Thursday and was sentenced to six months in jail and five years probation, prosecutors said.

Lawrence E. Ledent also must pay $50,000 restitution to Ohio-based Roadway Express, which fired him after the Oscars disappeared from a warehouse near Los Angeles in early March.

That amount compensates the company for the reward money it paid salvage man Willie Fulgear, who found all but three of the statuettes in a trash bin a week before the Academy Awards show on March 26.

Ledent also must pay the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences $1,050 — $350 for each gold-plated statuette still missing.

Ledent, 38, has been free on bail. He will begin serving his sentence Aug. 8, according to the district attorney's office.

A warehouse loading dock worker also was linked to the theft, but prosecutors declined to file charges, citing insufficient evidence.