BANGOR, Maine — A judge this week ordered an Enfield businessman who bilked three clients out of $17,665 to serve 26 months in prison starting Monday, and to pay back the money he took.

Charles Simon Jr., 36, was convicted of three counts of Class C theft by unauthorized taking or transfer on Sept. 1. State police had charged him with five counts of theft on Dec. 24, 2015. Prosecutors dropped one count during the two-day trial and Superior Court Justice William Anderson acquitted Simon of another, officials said.

Rejecting defense claims that Simon was merely a bad businessman, Anderson said during Tuesday’s sentencing hearing at the Penobscot Judicial Center that since 2014 Simon knowingly sold equipment he could not legally sell and sold a hunting trip to a Pennsylvania man, despite not being legally allowed to carry a firearm due to a previous conviction.

Assistant District Attorney Devon DeMarco proclaimed Tuesday “a very good day for the victims in this case.”

“Mr. Simon did take thousands of dollars from them and so this conviction was vindication that they were wronged and they are very happy that he is going to have to serve prison time as a result of that,” DeMarco said Tuesday.

Anderson found Simon guilty of illegally selling restaurant equipment worth $6,000 for $1,500, of failing to fulfill a contract to build a cabin or barn for $9,665 in Enfield and of accepting $2,000 to provide a guided bear hunt with lodging and meals without providing those services.

Anderson sentenced Simon to five years imprisonment with all but two years and two months suspended, plus two years probation. Probation conditions include that Simon pay back the victims the money they are owed at about $200 per month.

Somewhat tearful and choked up, Simon expressed regret to the victims.

“I am sorry. I never meant for things to happen the way they did. They did, and I can’t take that back, so I am sorry. I am sorry to my family for putting them in the position that I put them in,” Simon said. “I know I have done wrong. I’ve admitted it, that I have done wrong, and that I owe these people money. The only thing I want to do is just pay these people back because they deserve it.”

His attorney, Nolan Tanous of Millinocket, said that Simon was a good carpenter and busy subcontractor but a poor businessman.

Anderson said he opted to give Simon a reduced sentence because he wanted Simon to pay back the more than $17,000 owed to his victims. An extended prison stay would not help accomplish that.

Anderson agreed to defense requests to allow Simon to spend Easter weekend with his family and to finish putting a roof on the Simon residence before reporting for incarceration on Monday.