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Harpersfield man charged in Otsego County timber theft

By WKTV News

MORRIS, N.Y. (WKTV) - An Otsego County man is now facing charges after a year-long investigation into the theft of timber.

According to the Otsego County Sheriff's Office, Kurt P. Eckert, 48, of Harpersfield is the former owner of Extreme Logging. Authorities say that in October 2010, Eckert contracted with a Town of Morris couple living on State Route 51 to cut timber off their property. Eckert's crews cut and removed the timber in 2010 and 2011, but authorities say he failed to pay the Morris couple for their share.

The couple contacted to the Otsego County Sheriff's Office Criminal Investigation Department in March 2011 to report the larceny. In October and November 2011, the New York State DEC estimated the amount of timber harvested by Eckert was roughly $18,000 and that the couple was owed $9,000.

Authorities said Eckert surrendered himself on Monday, March 5 at the Otsego County Sheriff's Office and was charged with third-degree grand larceny. He was arraigned in front of a Cooperstown Judge and released on his own recognizance. He is set to re-appear in Village of Cooperstown Court on March 21.

If convicted, Eckert faces up to seven years in state prison.

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