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Man gets 3 years for felony theft

August 02, 1999

The victims of two of Salvador Antonio Machado's scams have seen some restitution for their losses but they learned Monday in Washington County Circuit Court they may have to wait a while for the rest.

The 34-year-old native of El Salvador was sentenced by Circuit Judge Frederick Wright to 10 years in prison with all but three years suspended following his guilty plea to one count of felony theft.

Two additional theft charges were dismissed in exchange for the plea.

In late 1997, Machado met a family visiting Hagerstown from out of town, struck up a conversation and arranged to sell them a car for $600. He told them the car had been confiscated by the Narcotics Task Force, according to Assistant Washington County State's Attorney Arthur Rozes.

The family gave him the money, he went to get the car and the family never saw him again, Rozes said.

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Restitution also was ordered for a Hagerstown man who agreed to cash a check for Machado who claimed he had lost his green card and couldn't get it cashed himself.

The check turned out to be stolen and when the bank found out, it took the money out of the victim's account to retrieve its loss, court records said.

Defense attorney Steve Kessell told Wright that Machado has been in the United States since 1977. In jail since April, Machado has no job and is trying to get on disability.

"I want to apologize," Machado said.

Wright ordered Machado to pay the $900 balance and placed him on five years probation after his release.

- Marlo Barnhart

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