Division of Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Agents Charge Ocean View Boat Engine Repair Shop Owner with Three-Year Boat and Motor Theft Spree

June 30, 2005

Following up on a tip about the location of a stolen boat engine, Division of Fish and Wildlife enforcement agents have solved a three-year theft spree by the operator of Moonlight Marine, an Ocean View boat engine repair shop. The stolen property is valued at more than $500,000.

Stanley A. Clark, 43, of Ocean View, Delaware was arrested on Wednesday, June 29 and arraigned in JP Court 3, Georgetown. He is charged with 33 counts, including theft, forgery, criminal mischief and criminal trespass. He was released on $23,000 unsecured bond for a hearing July 11 in the Court of Common Pleas.

On May 9, Senior Corporal Douglas Messick of the Division's Sussex County field office received information about stolen boat motors dating back to May 2002. Throughout the course of a six-week investigation, 23 victims were interviewed and numerous pieces of evidence, including boats, outboard motors, electronic equipment, business receipts and financial statements were collected.

To date, 11 outboard motors, each valued at $10,000 or more, have been recovered. Most of them had been sold by Clark to boaters who thought they were making legitimate purchases. Many of the stolen boats were found abandoned in out-of-the-way locations throughout lower Delaware and the lower eastern shore of Maryland.

Investigating officers are still trying to sort out ownership of many of the confiscated items. They would like to hear from anyone who has purchased what they believe to be a new motor from Clark in the past three years. Corp. Messick or Lt. Aaron Hurd can be reached at (302)856-5644.

The charges filed against Clark are for:

Theft where the property value is $100,000 or more;
Forgery in the second degree;
Theft by false pretenses of over $1,000;
Criminal mischief with less than $1,000 in property damage;
Making a false incident report to a law enforcement officer or agency;
Criminal trespass in the second degree;
Criminal trespass in the third degree.

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