A 30-YEAR-OLD father of six committed a spree of robberies which struck four Gympie businesses around Christmas time last year. FILE PHOTO
A 30-YEAR-OLD father of six committed a spree of robberies which struck four Gympie businesses around Christmas time last year. FILE PHOTO Neighbour's Aid

Man jailed after robbery spree hits Gympie businesses hard

A 30-YEAR-OLD father of six committed a spree of robberies which struck four Gympie businesses around Christmas time last year, the Gympie District Court has heard.

Michael McGregor Franklin, now 31, caused about $11,000 in losses to the local businesses between December 22-28 when he used various means to break in, stealing about $2000 in cash, and an amount of tobacco products from a service station worth about $7000.

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Franklin pleaded guilty to three counts of breaking and entering a premises and stealing and one each of breaking and entering wilful damage, entering a premises and stealing, producing and possessing cannabis.

The court heard that Franklin used concrete and a bottle to smash windows during the spree, and managed to kick the glass in at another premises.

Police searched his house later and found a "significant amount” of stolen property, before arresting Franklin and taking him into custody, where he remained for 210 days until his court matters were finalised yesterday.

In sentencing Franklin, Judge Suzanne Sheridan noted his lengthy and "unfortunate” criminal history containing various drug offences, going armed to cause fear, receiving stolen property, burglary and shoplifting among other offending.

His mother and partner were present in court, with the latter writing a letter to the court explaining a motorbike accident Franklin suffered while working as manager on a farm last October had resulted in a broken ankle and kneecap, and caused him to suffer from depression.

He had been placed on a waiting list for surgery and hoped to return to farm work once he had healed. His family had been forced to move from the farm because of his injury.

Judge Sheridan sentenced Franklin to three years in jail on the break and enter offences, setting his parole release date for January 26 next year.

Gympie Times


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