GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

April 12, 2013

Man admits theft in fishing case

By Marjorie Nesin
Staff Writer

---- — A 45-year-old Amesbury man who had come to Gloucester to fish for tuna has admitted in court to charges of stealing from a fellow fisherman and the owner of the boat — charges that led to his arrest near the season’s end.

Christopher J. Perkins was ordered to pay $1,000 restitution to the owner of the boat on which Perkins fished, his boss Bill Brown. He was also ordered to pay $1,406.47 restitution to Rose’s Oil Services Inc. for boat supplies that he paid for with a check that ultimately bounced.

According to police, Perkins opened his boss’s wallet many times over the season to use the credit cards left in his the wallet in the work truck to pay for boat supplies with checks from his own account. But he had closed the account prior to his issuing the check, police said.

Judge Joseph Jennings sentenced him to a year in Middleton Jail, but Perkins was only ordered to immediately serve 59 of those days, with the balance of the sentence suspended and held over his head throughout his probation which ends in October 2014. Jennings also determined that Perkins had already served the 59 days as he awaited trial.

William Brown was out fishing Thursday and unavailable for comment, but his son, B.G. Brown, a Gloucester fisherman, also knows Perkins, he said. Brown said Perkins and his father were friends long ago, but then Perkins left town, and when Perkins returned he had touted himself as a changed man — “a very good con artist,” the younger Brown said.

Perkins pleaded guilty to four of the five charges he faced in the case; those included larceny of over $250, larceny by check and credit card and credit card fraud over $250.

Judge Jennings dismissed a charge of identity fraud at the state’s request.

In the case where Perkins admitted to writing a check from a closed bank account and handing it over to Rose’s Oil Services Inc. to pay for boat fuel, he faced one charge of larceny by check of more than $250, and admitted to the charge.

Jennings ordered him to pay a $90 assessment and the $1,406.47 restitution on that charge.

According to a police report, Brown had granted Perkins permission to use his boat if Perkins paid for fuel and other expenses, so Perkins paid with the personal check under his name, written out from a closed account.

Marjorie Nesin can be reached at 978-283-7000, x3451, or at mnesin@gloucestertimes.com.