BANGOR, Maine -&nbspThree area men were arrested Wednesday afternoon in connection with the theft of $6,000 worth of electrical wiring from a Bradley contractor earlier in the day or late Tuesday night.

Chauncey Russell Hulbert, 24, of Old Town and Eric Roy, 19, of Bangor were arrested when they tried to sell some of the wiring at Smorgon Steel Recycling on Broadway in Bangor.

Thefts of metal have increased over the past couple of years as metal prices have soared. Maine State Trooper Kyle Willette on Thursday described the stolen metal as bare aluminum wire and black-jacketed aluminum wire.

Police alerted firms in the Bangor area that purchase scrap metal for recycling to be on the lookout for anyone trying to sell the easily recognizable wire after the theft in Bradley was reported about 6:45 a.m. Wednesday.

Smorgon employees called police about 11 a.m. when the accused thieves tried to sell some of the wire, the trooper said.

Interviews with Hurbert and Roy led investigators to Jacob Shuman, 18, of Milford, according to Willette. Shuman was arrested about 9:30 p.m. Wednesday by Trooper David Yankowski at a Milford trailer park, where more of the stolen wire was recovered.

Hulbert and Roy were charged with receiving stolen property. Shuman was charged with theft.

They are scheduled to appear in Penobscot County Superior Court in mid-September unless they are indicted by the Penobscot County grand jury this month or next.

If convicted, each man faces up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.

All three have been released from the Penobscot County Jail on cash bail.