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Sheffield man charged with theft from Ford Plant

Posted: 7:36 PM, Dec 08, 2015
Updated: 2015-12-08 19:36:53-05

A Sheffield man has been indicted on charges he stole thousands of auto parts from the Lorain County Ford Assembly plant where he worked and sold them on ebay.

Joseph Jankulovich, 48, faces felony theft and receiving stolen property charges related to the theft of Ford OEMS tire sensors—and police say it was more than a few.

"My estimates from the records are it would have been about 5,000 that were sold," said Avon Lake Detective Tim Schleicher. "Ford estimates they were missing around 8,000," he said.

Schleicher said the parts cost dealers anywhere up to $100 but were sold on ebay by Jankulovich in the $10 to $20 range to customers all over the world.

"These were sold internationally," said Schleicher, listing sales to Germany. "It was a very good value to buy this at the price he was selling them."

So many of the tire sensors were missing at one point that the plant actually ran out bringing production briefly to a halt, police said. "That's basically what got the attention of [Ford] calling me," Schleicher said. "They had them flown from Michigan to get the line moving again."

Police made several purchases over a period of time that were traced back to the Lorain County plant and to Jankulovich. Schleicher said Ford estimated the value of the items stolen at more than $500,000.

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