Crook racked up £1,700 bill on bank cards stolen in burglaries

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STOLEN bank card fraudster Adam Lee has been jailed after racking up a £1,700 bill on cards taken in two burglaries.

The 26-year-old was spending cash on the cards within hours of the two raids in September and October.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard Lee carried out the first spree spending £360 between September 16 and 17 after a card was taken from a Portsmouth family’s home as they were on holiday earlier in the month.

Prosecutor Mary Aspinall-Miles told the court Lee spent £1,400 at shops after a burglary at a block of flats.

The card had been taken in the morning from a home in Red Lodge Apartments, Clarence Parade, Southsea.

By 2pm Lee was using the contactless card at shops in Commercial Road, including JD Sports, and in convenience stores in Albert Road.

Police obtained CCTV footage from the shops and linked Lee to the frauds.

Mitigating, Bridget O’Hagan said Lee was ‘bound to be caught’ as the crimes were not sophisticated.

The prosecutor added: ‘There are offences committed while on bail, waiting to be sentenced on licence.

‘It shows, the prosecution say, utter flagrant disregard for court orders and court sentences because nothing appears to have deterred him.’

The court heard Lee was sentenced to 16 months in prison for dangerous driving in December last year.

He was released on licence in August this year – and then a month later had the first stolen bank card but was not caught.

Then in September he appeared at Portsmouth Crown Court and was handed a 21-month suspended sentence for knocking out a woman outside Ken’s Fried Chicken in Commercial Road when he attacked two other men in 2016.

Then after being handed that suspended sentence, he went on to use the second stolen card, the court heard.

Sentencing, judge David Melville QC said: ‘Each of these offences are very serious and there’s no alternative that you must go immediately to prison.’

Lee admitted 12 charges of making false representations by using the cards, and two charges of handling stolen goods in having the cards.

The judge activated Lee’s wounding and actual bodily harm suspended sentences with concurrent terms of a year for handling and six months for fraud.

Ms O’Hagan said Lee, of HMP Highdown, had been ‘exceptionally co-operative’ and admitted the charges at the first opportunity in court.