Michigan man pleads guilty in scam to illegally return cans

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FLINT, Mich. (AP) — Authorities say a man illegally brought loads of beverage containers from Indiana to Michigan as part of a scam to get bottle deposit money.

The office of Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette says 70-year-old John Custer Woodfill of Flint is awaiting sentencing May 2 after pleading guilty this week in a Genesee County courtroom. It’s illegal to return bottles or cans from outside Michigan for a 10-cent refund.

Woodfill owes $400,000 in restitution. The Associated Press sent an email Wednesday seeking comment from his lawyer.

Investigators say that from 2012-2015 Woodfill bought cans in Indiana as scrap and began returning them to Michigan with the help of a now-deceased partner.

Schuette’s office says the partner later operated a beverage can recycling operation in Brownstown, Indiana, and shipped containers to Michigan.