Man snared over trailer deception
THE TICKING of a box proved the downfall of a man who attempted to transfer ownership of a stolen trailer into his name.
When the offender, George Bennett-Beddow, entered a courthouse to register the box trailer, he soon landed himself in trouble.
Caught out and already dealt with by a court over the stolen box trailer offence some months ago, Bennett-Beddow returned to Ipswich Magistrates Court charged over incorrect legal information he gave in order to register it in Queensland.
The court heard he was now in the "fortunate" position of earning $2000 a week - his defence lawyer seeking only a fine because of his previous punishment.
George Arthur Bennett-Beddow, 30, from Toolgoolawah, pleaded guilty to committing fraud by inducing a person (government agent) to act at Toogoolawah Courthouse on December 3, 2018.
Prosecutor Sergeant Paul Caldwell said when making his signed application (with no VIN) for the box trailer of four tonnes or less, Bennett-Beddow ticked the box that he was the manufacturer of the trailer.
The court agent, acting on behalf of Queensland Transport and Main Roads, sighted his Queensland driver licence and signature, the registration approval given based on the misleading information.
Sgt Caldwell said he used the VIN to remake a stolen trailer as being his own.
When queried by Magistrate Virginia Sturgess whether the box trailer was stolen, Sgt Caldwell said yes, and that Bennett-Beddow had been dealt with by an Ipswich court in June on a charge of unlawful use.
Defence barrister Bernard Battley sought only for a fine, saying Bennett-Beddow had received a 150-hour unpaid community service work order on the other offence, and had rapport with his community service officer.
He said that if the new charge was dealt with at the same time, it was unlikely further community work hours would have been ordered.
"My client is in the fortunate position that he earns an income of $2000 a week," Mr Battley said.
"If the court had been aware of it then there would have been no further penalty. Totality is an important factor here."
Magistrate Virginia Sturgess said the trailer was stolen and Bennett-Beddow falsely represented that he'd manufactured the trailer to get a VIN to disguise that it was stolen.
Taking into account all matters, she convicted and fined him $400.