Editor

Suspects steal more than $20,00 from Home Depot

State authorities have requested warrants for the arrest of two men accused of grand theft at more than 30 home Depot stores.

The suspects are Roland Hartridge Lee, 38, of Sanford, and Juan Jose Sapeg, 37, of Orlando. The charges, grand theft and conspiracy to commit grand theft, stem from stolen goods at more than 30 Home Depot stores.

The thefts occurred in Osceola and 14 other different counties. Both Lee and Sapeg are already in state prison on separate and unrelated charges.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement received a complaint from Home Depot’s corporate investigator about store losses and suspected theft. After launching an investigation, agents found from March 2017 to May 2017 Lee and Sapeg made more than 70 fraudulent transactions using a variety of schemes. In one, Sapeg or Lee would switch barcodes on high-priced items with lower-priced ones and pay far less than what the item was worth.

 The stolen merchandise included high-value goods such as power drills and multi-tools, resulting in a loss of more than $20,000 for the stores. Later, both Lee and Sapeg would sell the items online.

 Lee and Sapeg have bonds of $25,000. The case will be prosecuted by Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Office of Statewide Prosecution.