CCTV captures buying binge on stolen card

A MAN claimed to have been given a woman's stolen bankcard as a favour from a friend after being caught using it to make hundreds of dollars in fraudulent transactions.

An Ipswich court on Tuesday heard the offender was identified using the card in a rapid-fire shopping spree on CCTV footage.

Scott Harold Degen, 32, from Coalfalls, pleaded guilty to possession of tainted property on February 4; and committing fraud by dishonestly using a debit card.

Prosecutor Sergeant Trent Voigt told Ipswich Magistrates Court the female owner of the card reported a burglary at her home at Middle Park, with the offender gaining access to her house through a garage door.

Her handbag, house keys, driver's licence, bankcards and some jewellery were taken.

The next afternoon between 4.25-5pm one of her cards was used multiple times to make purchases that included $81.22 at a Caltex service station, $85.99 at a liquor store; $77 in a Coles supermarket, and $89 at another business.

Sgt Voigt said CCTV at the service station identified Degan and his vehicle.

Police caught up with him at Bundamba on March 7 but Degen declined to answer questions.

Defence lawyer Allana Davie said Degen instructed he was lent the card by a friend and knew he should not have used it.

"He should have made more inquiries (about its ownership)," Ms Davie said.

That explanation from Ms Davie did not impress Magistrate David Shepherd a great deal.

"He didn't have to make too many inquiries. The name was on the card," Mr Shepherd said.

Ms Davie said there had been a delay in the case as Degen did not accept a previous allegation that he had broken into the victim's home.

"He was homeless at the time. He now has a caretaker job and receives $650 a fortnight from COVID benefit," she said.

Mr Shepherd noted Degen had been in difficult circumstances at the time but that this did not justify his dishonest conduct.

He fined Degen $750.

Degen was ordered to pay restitution of $464.89.



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