A MAN has fronted court more than four years after he hired a rental car and never returned it.
David Roger Kakouris’s lawyer said the 33-year-old was planning to use the baby bonus he and his then-partner were about to get to pay for the car rental, which was initially hired for one day.
Kakouris appeared in Ballarat Magistrates Court yesterday where he pleaded guilty to five charges including shop theft, dealing property suspected to be the proceeds of crime and theft of a motor vehicle.
The court heard Kakouris first hired the Hyundai from a Thrifty car rental store in Ballarat on November 5, 2007.
The father-of-seven extended the hire period from one day until November 27, paying about $950 for it to that point.
But when Christmas came Kakouris still had the car and hadn’t paid the rental company any more money.
When Thrifty finally got in touch with his then-partner, they were told Kakouris would pay once the couple had received the baby bonus for their new child, who was eventually born in early February 2008.
When police went to Kakouris’s home a short time later they found the car sitting in the driveway.
Defence lawyer Mike Wardell urged the court not to jail his client, saying Kakouris was genuine about the baby bonus, and had been behaving himself recently.
“It seems as though there are some glimmers of hope, not withstanding the tragedies his life has been littered with,” Mr Wardell said.
Magistrate Peter Couzens convicted and fined Kakouris $1300, acknowledging it was not the most serious theft case.
“It’s holding over rather than a traditional form of theft, which your client is also familiar with,” Mr Couzens said.