Wine thieves plead guilty to crimes in Bellevue, Seattle


Two Seattle wine thieves pleaded guilty Monday in King County Superior Court to stealing $650,000 in product from a storage facility in Sodo, with one defendant also admitting to stealing $250,000 worth of wine from a Bellevue businesswoman last year.

Samuel A. Harris, 35, pleaded guilty Monday for his part in the November theft from storage lockers at Esquin Wine & Spirits, where he and accomplice Luke A. Thesing, 36, also cut gas lines in an attempt to start a fire at the facility, according to the King County Prosecutor's Office. Harris pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree arson, second-degree burglary and 10 counts of first-degree theft, for which he faces up to 108 months in prison. Thesing pleaded guilty to second-degree burglary and nine counts of first-degree theft, for which he faces up to 68 months in prison. The prosecutor's office reports it is seeking top-range sentencing for both men.

Harris, who was hired by a Bellevue woman last year to build a wine-storage cellar at her business, also admitted to stealing $250,000 in product from her in May 2013. He is alleged to have sold most of that wine.

Both men are set for sentencing 1 p.m. July 25.

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