Jakob Lloyd Bryan leaves court.
Jakob Lloyd Bryan leaves court. Ross Irby

Petrol thief's genius trick undone by groceries grab

FUEL thief Jakob Bryan decided to splice together two number plates from different vehicles before he did a series of petrol drive-offs.

Service stations in the Ipswich region were ripped off by $500, but it was Bryan's theft at a supermarket that led to his downfall.

Bryan's failure to falsify his rego plates when he stole $500 worth of groceries helped to nail him when he was seen driving away afterwards.

The rego was noted and police tracked Bryan back to his home.

Ipswich Magistrates Court heard Bryan had a history for stealing and dishonesty offences, with dozens of prior convictions.

This time, Jakob Lloyd Bryan, 27, from Redbank Plains, pleaded guilty to 13 charges including four offences of driving when disqualified; four registration offences; four counts of stealing fuel; and stealing $500 worth of groceries.

The offences were committed between March and May 2018.

Legal Aid lawyer Toby Davidson said Bryan was now a casual spray painter in a panel workshop.

He said Bryan lost a job in 2016 and began using ice.

"He was struggling financially with the cost of living at the time and stole food and fuel," Mr Davidson said.

Magistrate Virginia Sturgess said fuel worth $170 and $120 was stolen on March 4 and March 7; and fuel worth $105.90 and $105.31 was stolen on May 3 and May 7.

On May 26, he stole $500 worth of groceries from an Ipswich supermarket.

Ms Sturgess said Bryan filled up a trolley with the groceries then wheeled it away through a fire door exit out to the car park.

Ms Sturgess reminded Bryan he had 35 previous convictions for offences of dishonesty, stealing and burglary.

"You can't just go out and help yourself to the property of others. It's been a habit of yours over the years," Ms Sturgess said.

For his five offences of stealing, Bryan was sentenced to six months' jail with immediate parole.

Bryan was sentenced to a total of nine months in jail, suspended immediately for a period of two years.

His licence was also disqualified for two years.

He was fined $500 for having false plates and ordered to pay restitution to his vicitms.