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HAMMOND — Two men charged locally in Region copper wire thefts are now charged in federal court with interstate transportation of stolen property, according to a news release from the U.S. attorney's office.

Jossean Manuel Echevarria, 30, of Hammond, and Diquan Dashawn Ray, 23, of Burnham, were charged Monday, the release states.

Echevarria and Ray are accused of stealing copper wire from Clayhole Woods, a Cook County Forest Preserve in Calumet City, and then transporting the wire into Indiana.

Police stopped the pair in a vehicle in Hammond and found them in possession of the copper wire from the forest preserve, the release states.

The case was investigated by the FBI GRIT Task Force in conjunction with Hammond and Lansing police and the Cook County Sheriff's Department. 

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