Unlicensed driver nabbed in car park after court appearance

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A BALLARAT man had just left court when a covert police surveillance operation busted the unlicensed driver leaving the area in an unregistered car, a court has heard.

Kyle Strebs, 18, appeared in Ballarat Magistrates Court on Monday, where he pleaded guilty to the driving charges as well as burglary. 

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Gerard Barrow told the court police set up the covert operation in the car park opposite the Ballarat law courts about 2.15pm on March 3 this year, just as Strebs left court. 

The court head Strebs walked to a car, got in the driver’s seat, and drove off. 

Senior Constable Barrow said police were unable to intercept Strebs, but knew he was driving an unregistered car without a licence. 

Strebs’ other charges related to offences in which he used a black marker to graffiti a disabled toilet wall at the Maryborough McDonald’s restaurant and another incident where he broke into a Victoria Street monastery, writing “(expletive) the police” on a wall. 

Representing himself, a clearly embarrassed Strebs could not explain his offending when questioned by magistrate Cynthia Toose. 

While he pleaded guilty to the driving charge, Strebs blamed a friend, telling Ms Toose it hadn’t been him behind the wheel. 

Strebs then said he had been intoxicated when he broke into the monastery and couldn’t remember the incident. 

Ms Toose, who described his offending as targeting the vulnerable, ordered he be assessed for a community correction order. 

He will be sentenced at a later date.

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