A Detroit man pleaded not guilty Friday in U.S. District Court in Toledo to charges that he stole at least $16,000 worth of merchandise from Lowe’s and Home Depot stores in the Toledo and Cleveland areas, then returned the goods for store credit.
In an indictment unsealed Friday, Larry D. Frazier, 56, was charged with 45 counts of wire fraud and one count of transporting fraudulently obtained property in interstate commerce.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office said he allegedly placed small, expensive items, such as rough plumbing and electrical items, inside large outdoor lighting boxes, then purchased the boxed lighting. He would then return the items for which he had a receipt for a refund and return the other items for store credit.
Federal prosecutors said Mr. Frazier returned stolen merchandise at least 45 times and got more than $16,000 in store credit at stores in Toledo, Perrysburg, Sylvania, Sandusky, and the greater Cleveland area.