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A financially troubled man who stole female calves from area dairy farms will receive up to three years in prison under a plea deal reached Thursday.

Scott J. Taylor, 36, pleaded guilty in Wyoming County Court to seven counts of third-degree burglary, one count of grand larceny and eight counts of petit larceny.

Taylor, of Springville, also agreed to pay $12,150 restitution to his victims, which included dairy farmers in 12 Wyoming County towns.

He confessed to stealing an estimated 200 to 300 calves and selling them after he had run into financial difficulties, investigators said.

Taylor chose female calves because their value has doubled in recent years to between $400 and $600, in part because of a ban on cattle imports from Canada, investigators said.

Taylor also faces charges in the theft of dairy calves in Cattaraugus and Genesee counties. Sentencing was set for June 23.

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