Ringleader of whiskey theft operation gets sentence cut

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – The ringleader of a widely publicized whiskey theft operation was sentenced to 15 years in prison, but he’s about to be released after serving a month.

A Kentucky judge on Friday shortened the jail time for ex-distillery worker Gilbert “Toby” Curtsinger after prosecutors made no objection to a defense request. Curtsinger’s attorney says he’ll be released soon, about 30 days into his sentence.

Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate granted the defense’s motion for shock probation.

Curtsinger pleaded guilty last September for his role in spiriting away tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of bourbon from Buffalo Trace and Wild Turkey distilleries.

The thefts, known as the “Pappygate” case, included hard-to-get and pricey brands such as Pappy Van Winkle bourbon. Authorities estimated the recovered whiskey was worth at least $100,000.

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