Hogue Gets 3-5 Years For Theft of Gems

New Jersey Files Warrant For Rendition Of Former Extension School Student

The Harvard extension school student charged with stealing nearly $100,000 in gems for the Harvard Mineralogical Museum in April was sentenced last week to three of five years in prison.

James Arthur Hogue, who had compiled a long list of aliases and convictions before coming to Harvard last year, plead guilty on December 27 to one count of larceny over $250, said Jill Reilly, spokesperson for the Middlesex County District Attorney's office.

Middlesex Superior Court Judge Robert Barron sentenced Hogue to serve one year of the sentence, the balance of which will be suspended for three years.

But it is likely that will not be the end of Hogue's legal troubles.

Harvard Detective Richard Mederos, who spearheaded the investigation in to the thefts, said yesterday that Hogue is wanted in New Jersey for violating his parole by leaving for Massachusetts and by committing a felony.

The state of New Jersey has lodged a warrant for Hogue's rendition, Mederos said, and Hogue will likely serve an additional five years there once released from the Ceder Junction prison in Walpole, Mass.

In February of 1992, Hogue pleaded guilty in a New Jersey court to theft by deception for falsely collecting $22,000 in financial aid from Princeton University by assuming the identity of another student.

The recovery of Harvard's gems, led by Mederos and the Harvard police Criminal Investigation Division, was one of the largest recoveries of stolen property in the University's history.

Hogue was arrested by Harvard police following the execution of a search warrant at his Marion Street apartment in Somerville. He had worked as a part-time cataloger at the Mineralogical Museum.

During that search, police recovered numerous gems, including a cache of gold, silver, rubies, opals and more than 100 other precious and non-precious gems and minerals which Hogue had stolen from the museum over a nine-month period. Police also found a microscope and other Harvard property.

On May 26, Harvard police returned to the apartment and recovered $600 in electronic equipment reported stolen from Roscom, a New Jersey electronics firm where Hogue worked in summer of 1992.

Police believe Hogue came to Harvard shortly after working at Roscom.