Car theft ends in jail
AN Airlie Beach labourer who stole a white Holden commodore from Melbourne airport and drove it up to Queensland was given a six-month jail sentence on Monday.
Shane Michael John Esse, 33, pleaded guilty in the Proserpine Magistrate's Court to stealing, bringing stolen goods into Queensland and unlawfully using a motor vehicle.
Police prosecutor Melinda Steele said Esse stole the car on the 14th of February, 2005.
Esse told police he took the car when he saw it at the airport with its doors open and the keys in.
A few months later Esse stole about $2000 cash from a hotel register.
Solicitor Jo Linnewebber said Esse had had problems with drugs and crimes in Victoria.
He stole the car to drive to Queensland and make a fresh start, she told the court.
Since arriving in the Whitsundays, Esse had found employment, made supportive friends and planned to obtain a trade.
Magistrate Ron Muirhead noted Esse had a history of similar offences and had already served five months imprisonment.
"With your record there is no alternative but to impose imprisonment," he said.
Esse was also ordered to pay $2000 to replace the stolen cash.