Mastermind of 'Pappygate' whiskey theft ring granted shock probation
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The ringleader who masterminded the so-called "Pappygate" whiskey theft ring was granted shock probation. According to court records, Gilbert "Toby" Curtsinger is expected to be released from the Woodford County Detention Center on Sunday.
Curtsinger, a former distillery worker, was sentenced to 15 years in prison in June for the scheme that siphoned tens of thousands of dollars' worth of bourbon from two distilleries. The thefts included hart-to-get and pricey brands such as Pappy Van Winkle bourbon taken from the Buffalo Trace distillery. The thefts also targeted the Wild Turkey distillery.
Authorities estimated the recovered whiskey was worth at least $100,000. They say Curtsinger loaded whiskey barrels into a pickup truck, covered them with a tarp and hauled them to potential buyers. Hew as indicted in 2015.
In a motion for shock probation, Curtsinger's attorneys argued that Pappy Van Winkle actually benefited from the thefts.
"While this matter has been the source of immense publicity, it remains a property crime," Curtsinger's attorneys argued in the motion. "In fact, this is a rare circumstance in which the victim of this crime has been the recipient of major financial benefits, resulting from the publicity this matter attracted. Without a doubt, the identified victims have done nothing but profit from this case, while Toby has suffered immense loss as a result of his actions. He has lost his employment; his family has struggled and he has now served almost thirty days in jail as a result of his actions. Certainly, he has felt the repercussions of his decisions."
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