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Ex-BYU football player Reno Mahe, 4 others face felony theft charges in gasoline case

Published: Thursday, July 14 2011 10:41 p.m. MDT

SALT LAKE CITY — A criminal theft charge has been filed against former BYU standout and NFL player Reno Mahe.

The charge of theft, a second-degree felony, was filed in 3rd District Court under the 31-year-old's full name —Sateki Reno Mahe — last week, but the man was booked into jail briefly Thursday and released pending an upcoming court appearance.

The charges allege that Mahe and four others, including fellow former BYU football player Tevita Ofahengaue, 37, stole more than $15,000 in gasoline between August and October of 2010 from a construction company.

Mahe's friend, Mark Evers, 31, was working for A-Core Concrete Cutting at the time and was filling his own vehicle and those of his friends using a company gas code, according to the charges.

An audit showed that more than $55,000 was stolen between June 2006 and October 2010. The charges state that surveillance video from the August to October 2010 timeframe showed Mahe, Evers, Ofahengaue as well as Fred Prescott, 35, and Michael Andrus, 35, filling "their personal vehicles with gas after business hours using the code."

"Mahe was present during the theft of $2,688.43," the charges state, listing the various dollar amounts of gas that was taken while each defendant was present.

In a police interview, Evers told police that he and his friends would meet "once or twice a week at A-Core Concrete and they would fill their vehicles up for gas,"the charges state.

"(Evers) stated that Andrus and Mahe came with him often and that Prescott and Ofahengaue came with him only a few times."

Evers also allegedly told police "that he had conversations with each of the above listed friends at different times in which he told them he was not allowed to take gas from the company," the charges state.

The concrete company filed a civil lawsuit against the five men in November of 2010, at which time Mahe said: "I thought you were allowed to do it," he said. "I didn't steal no gas. I don't need gas."

Mahe said then that he has met the owner of A-Core and was even asked to speak at a mission farewell for the man's grandson.

"It wasn't like I needed (A-Core's) gas," he said at the time. "I'll pay, if that's the deal. I'll pay my portion back if he wasn't allowed to give it to me. I'm not worried about that part. As a man, you pay back your debts."

A scheduling conference has been set in Mahe's case for Aug. 5.

Ofahengaue and Andrus are also facing single charges of theft, a second-degree felony, as are Evers, whose single theft count has been classified as a first-degree felony, and Prescott, whose theft count is a third-degree felony. 

Email: emorgan@desnews.com

Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam

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