MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A man pleaded guilty Friday to stealing thousands of trees from Chippewa National Forest and selling them as Christmas decorations.
Joseph Leon Edminster, 70, pleaded guilty to one count of theft of government property.READ MORE: Plymouth Hospital Set To Close Temporarily As Nurses Go On Strike Over Fair Pay
According to Edminster’s plea and court documents, Edminster stole 2,700 black spruce tree tops from the forest between Oct. 2008 and Oct. 2014.READ MORE: Double Crash On I-35W Leaves 2 Dead
After stealing the trees, Edminster sold them to wholesalers for use as Christmas trees.MORE NEWS: 2 Pedestrians Shot And Injured In South Minneapolis
Since 2008, Edminster stole nearly $25,000 worth of trees, according to U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger’s office.