Two Penobscot County men have been indicted for allegedly taking money for home repairs but not doing any of the work clients had paid them for, according to the Penobscot County District Attorney’s office.
Eric Bartell, 51, of Bangor and Lee G. Smith, 34, of Lee were indicted Wednesday on one count each of theft by deception under the home repair fraud law, a Class C crime, for separate alleged incidents.
Bartell is accused of taking $6,000 from an 80-year-old woman for a roof repair that was never done, said Assistant District Attorney Christopher Smith, who is prosecuting both cases.
Lee Smith, who is not related to the prosecutor, allegedly took a payment of $3,750 of what was to be a $7,500 job for improvements to a camp in Lakeville Plantation but did not work on the project.
Arraignment dates have not been set.
Cases involving alleged home repair fraud in which a person takes money but never does the work are easier to prosecute than cases in which someone begins but does not complete the work, Christopher Smith said.
That is because the statute requires that the state show the person never intended to do the repairs for which they were hired, he said.
If convicted, Bartell and Lee Smith face up to five years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines. The men also could be ordered to pay restitution if convicted.