Three men sentenced for van theft - Hoddesdon

11/04/2012

Three thieves who took a van from a driveway in Hoddesdon were caught on CCTV at the owner's home.

Brothers John Cash and Miles Cash and their nephew John McCarthy arrived at the address in Springwood Cock Lane by car.

The owner, Tony Dupey was out, but his camera recorded the men on the driveway, Luton Crown Court heard on Wednesday, 11 April 2012.

John Cash gained access to the Fiat Ducato van and drove off in it. The other two left the scene in the car.

Two days later the police stopped the car and arrested the three men, said Michael Attleborough for the Crown Prosecution Service.

The van, which had a 53 plate and was worth £3,000, was never recovered. Insurance was paid out for the van, but Mr Dupey lost £2,000 worth of tools that were inside because they were not covered.

John Cash, 38, of Watling Farm Close, Stanmore, Miles Cash, 44, of Plomer Avenue, Hoddesdon, and John McCarthy, 25,,of Theobold Crescent, Harrow, all pleaded guilty to the theft of the van on the afternoon of 23 November last year. John Cash had admitted the offence at a plea hearing, the other two pleaded guilty when their trial was listed last month. No evidence was offered on an alternative charge of burglary, which they all denied.

John and Miles Cash wore handcuffs in the dock after trouble broke out at the previous hearing.

John and Miles Cash had long records, including domestic burglaries.  John McCarthy had a much shorter list of previous crimes.

For John Cash, John Marchant asked for credit for his early guilty plea. He said he had an "unenviable record", having been released from his previous sentence a few days before the van theft.

Mr Marchant said: "He had come out of prison, had no money and no national insurance number and no benefits. He sold the van for scrap."

He said John Cash wanted to apologise to the court. He said he had a former wife in Ireland and a son aged 20 and daughter aged 7, who he had never seen. "He wants to start a new life when he is released," he said.

Rakesh Sharma, for Miles Cash, said he had been to Mr Dupey's house on an earlier occasion when he attempted to buy an old BMW that had been parked on the drive. He had wanted to sell it for scrap, he said.

He said Miles Cash came from a travelling background, but had a wife from the settled community. He has 5 children and 2 grandchildren. "He is trying to be a good role model to his grandchildren. He accepts he was not a good role model to his own children,"said Mr Sharma.

For John McCarthy, Henry Vallance said his criminal record was not as bad as the other two and he had kept out of trouble since the previous offences. He said McCarthy, who lives with his mother and three sisters, suffers from cerebral palsy.

Judge Michael Baker QC described John and Miles Cash as "career criminals." He sentenced John Cash to 14 months and Miles Cash to 21 months. McCarthy received a 9 month sentence suspended for 2 years with 12 months supervision and 30 days specified activities designed to address his literacy problems.

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