You don’t tug on superman’s cape, as the old song goes. You also don’t mess around with the Cape’s oyster farms.
A West Yarmouth man was sentenced to two years in prison Friday after he was convicted of stealing a copious amount of the bivalve delicacies. According to prosecutors, Michael E. Bryant, 37, stole $25,000 worth of oysters from oyster farms on the Cape in 2013.
During the summer of 2013, Bryant stole the oysters from Crowes Pasture in Dennis and from multiple town-owned farms in Barnstable, according to [Cape and Islands District Attorney Michael] O’Keefe. It was not immediately clear which farms in Barnstable were affected. Bryant was sentenced to two years because of the “significant amount” of oysters stolen, the district attorney said. “It certainly happens but not to this magnitude,” O’Keefe said in a telephone interview Friday night. “For some people it’s their life’s work. It’s a terrible thing to have someone be stealing.”
Bryant had sold the oysters to Joseph Vaudo, who owns a seafood store in Sandwich. Once the scheme was uncovered by police, customers and locals turned on Vaudo, who paid a $6,250 fine. The controversy played a role in a Sandwich Planning Board election when Vaudo lost his seat to a write-in candidate.
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