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Web preview: Former OSU law student indicted for stealing Moritz Library books

The Ohio State law student who OSU Police said stole almost $35,000 worth of books from the Moritz Law Library and sold them on Amazon.com was indicted Wednesday.

Christopher Brian Valdes, who was a second-year law student when OSU Police accused him of theft in October 2010, has taken 387 books from the law library in Drinko Hall, said OSU Police Detective Peter Dragonette, who is the lead investigator of the case.

Valdes did not immediately return e-mail requests for comment.

“The monetary loss to replace these books to the law library is $34,600,” Dragonette said. “I would expect him to pay (restitution for the books), but that’s up to the courts to decide.”

Valdes was indicted for fourth-degree felony theft.

Dragonette said he expects Valdes’ arraignment date to be scheduled within a month.

Valdes created two Amazon seller names from which to sell the books. Because of the legitimacy of the buying process of the stolen books, Dragonette said recovering them was unlikely.

“As far as the majority of the books that he stole and shipped to people throughout the country and throughout the world … we have not recovered those,” Dragonette said. “There’s no way for us to get those back.”

Employees at the law library spent hours on the case, going through all the Amazon lists and determining which books were missing.

“We take no pleasure in knowing one of our students was indicted,” said Bruce Johnson, associate dean for information services at Moritz College of Law and professor of law. “He threw away his … career in law.”

For more about the indicted law student, read Monday’s edition of The Lantern.

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