Last call: Anheuser-Busch IT guy tossed into prison for computer theft

An ex-IT consultant for Anheuser-Busch this week got 18 months in prison and ordered to pay $377,000 in restitution for swiping nearly $400,000 worth of the beer giant's computer gear.

According to court documents, between July 2006 and January 31, 2008, Jack Walter Barrett worked on site as an information technology consultant at the Anheuser-Busch Companies in St. Louis.  Barrett had access to the brewery's technology infrastructure as part of his work there and began to steal expensive computer hardware from Anheuser-Busch, which he took home, the Department of Justice said. 

Barrett had plead guilty last October that he sold the stolen merchandise on eBay where he claimed to be its rightful owner, at deeply discounted prices.  Barrett shipped the equipment to buyers across the country in Maryland, New Jersey, California and Oklahoma, the DOJ stated.   

United States Attorney Catherine Hanaway said: "This case involved a stunning breach of trust by a corporate consultant, and a complex distribution web for the stolen equipment."

The Anheuser theft is reminiscent of  a story from last year where a system administrator with the US Naval Research Laboratory plead guilty to taking over 19,000 pieces of computer equipment valued at $120,000. 

In pleading guilty, Victor Papagno said he took the items over a period of 10 years to benefit his family and his friends, reports said.  He took so much stuff that he stored some of it in neighbors' houses, according to a local news outlet.

In December, Papagno, was sentenced 18 months in prison and ordered to pay more than $159,000 in restitution.

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