For Immediate Release - April 01, 2014

           District Attorney Michael O'Keefe announced today that a Barnstable County Grand Jury returned indictments against Michael E. Bryant, DOB: 10/30/1976, in connection with a series of oyster thefts that occurred in recent months.

            Bryant was indicted for, six counts of Larceny of Property; Shellfish Sales Violation; Shellfish Contaminated Area; and Commercial Fishing License Violation. He will be arraigned in Barnstable Superior Court in the upcoming days.

            These indictments stem from a lengthy investigation that began when several oyster grant owners in Dennis and Barnstable reported the theft of thousands of oysters.

            The investigation focused on Bryant late in October when officers observed him to be raking oysters in a closed area in Yarmouth. A check revealed he was not properly permitted.

            Investigators executed a consent search of his home and recovered several oysters and harvesting equipment.

            Charged in connection with the investigation was Joseph A. Vaudo, DOB: 04/21/1951, of Sandwich.  Vaudo was charged with Receiving Stolen Property, MGL 266 Section 60; Directly and willfully misleading a police officer or investigator who is furthering a criminal investigation, MGL 268 Section 13B; and Failure or refusal to file statistical reports of wholesale and retail shellfish dealers, MGL 130 Section 21.

            Vaudo entered a guilty plea today in the Barnstable District Court and has been ordered to pay $6,250.00 in fines and court costs.

            The case remains under investigation by the Massachusetts Environmental Police and the Barnstable Police Department.

            The case is being prosecuted by First Assistant District Attorney Michael A. Trudeau and Assistant District Attorney Michael A. Patterson.