Willesden man jailed for role in £26k motorbike theft racket loses sentence appeal
PUBLISHED: 10:30 21 October 2016 | UPDATED: 10:32 21 October 2016
A Willesden man jailed for his role in a “professional and sophisticated” £100,000 motorbike theft racket has lost an appeal to have his sentence reduced.
Mario White, of Severn Way, was jailed for two years after he admitted conspiring to handle stolen goods and possessing a prohibited stun gun.
Yesterday at the Court of Appeal he claimed he had admitted the stun gun charge on the basis that he “found it in the street and intended to hand it in to the police, but forgot all about it”.
Appeal Court judge, Mrs Justice McGowan, expressed puzzlement that the Crown Prosecution Service had accepted that account.
She said: “In our view White was lucky that the Crown didn’t seek to challenge the basis of plea - that he had simply found the stun gun in the street and forgotten all about it.”
But the judge, sitting with the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Thomas, and Mr Justice Holroyde, added: “He had to be sentenced on that basis.”
The handling change against White involved his role in a plot to export “stolen to order” high-end motorbikes.
The bikes were destined for punters in the Caribbean, and White was involved over 12 months in 2014 and last year.
The total value of the stolen goods he handled was around £26,000, the court heard.
But the 47-year-old’s case reached the Appeal Court as he challenged his total two-year term, claiming it was far too tough.
He claimed to have had only a fringe role in the motorbike scam - being little more than a go-between and “man with a van”.
On top of that his lawyers pointed out his previous clean record and glowing character testimonials.
But the three judges rejected his complaints, ruling that his total sentence was “not manifestly excessive”.
Related link: Jailed: Willesden man who helped ship stolen motorbikes to Trinidad and Tobago