Drive-offs fuel dad's new car

HIS new car was not registered when police intercepted Brandon Pearn behind the wheel of a blue Mitsubishi Lancer.

And the cash-strapped dad of two did two fuel drive-offs to keep it running.

Brandon William Pearn, 26, from Redbank Plains, pleaded guilty in Ipswich Magistrates Court to two charges of stealing fuel on December 25 and November 15; driving an unregistered vehicle; and failing to notify his change of address.

The fuel drive-offs totalled $60.01.

Prosecutor, Sergeant Paul Caldwell said when police intercepted Pearn's car in December, a check revealed it was unregistered.

"He says he purchased the car a month before and had not paid registration or changed its ownership details," Sgt Caldwell said.

"He said he was short of cash and not had the money to pay its registration.

"He had moved and not updated his address with Queensland Transport."

"Checks revealed he was wanted for fuel (stealing) from Seven-11 at Redbank Plains on November 5 worth $39.99."

Sgt Caldwell said Pearn pumped fuel worth $20.02 at Caltex Goodna on December 25 and when his card was declined he left his details then left.

Defence lawyer Trevor Hoskin said Pearn had been in court in early December and fined $300 for a stealing offence.

Mr Hoskin said Pearn was a father of two children and struggling with his finances at the time.

Magistrate Andy Cridland fined Pearn $1000 and ordered him to pay restitution to both fuel service stations. .

Mr Cridland warned Pearn that he should be aware that because fuel thefts were related to the use of a motor vehicle, the court had the power to disqualify his licence.