When Nathan Blundell broke into an industrial premises at Young nearly three years ago he could not have known the horrific consequences of the crime.
Blundell was a 20-year-old drug addict at the time, the sad product of a dysfunctional family who started abusing alcohol and drugs in his early teens.
By August, 2013, Blundell had been taking the drug ice, smoking cannabis and drinking alcohol on a daily basis for a year.
Jobless, he committed crime to fund his addictions.
The company he kept was dangerous – drug addicts and thieves. And in the case of Owen Fuller, a future killer.
On August 7, 2013, Blundell and Fuller teamed up to break into Southcon Pty Ltd, a concrete block and brick company on Spring Creek Road in a semi-isolated industrial area.
In the dark, they cut a couple of padlocks to get into the property and entered a storage shed where a Nissan Navara utility and a hooked-up trailer packed with tools were parked.
About 4am on August 8, police investigated a report that the ute had crashed into a tree on Millards Road and exploded.
After the fire was extinguished, it was suspected the ute, insured for $24,550, had been torched.
The business owner told police a trailer had been attached to the ute.
It was found undamaged at Monteagle, but all the tools – insured for $35,610 – in the trailer were missing.
Included was a generator that Fuller and Blundell took to another thief – 33-year-old Corey Power.
Mr Power later sold the generator but refused to give Blundell and Fuller $600 for it.
Fuller became so angry he bashed Mr Power to death with a tomahawk on August 29. and was jailed for 24 and a half years for the murder and other offences.
Blundell has pleaded not guilty to a charge of being an accessory before the fact of murder and will stand trial in October.
He was arrested for the Southcon raid in February last year and later pleaded guilty to aggravated break and enter and commit serious indictable offence.
In Wagga District Court last Wednesday, Blundell was given a two-year head sentence, with 12 months non-parole, backdated to when he went into custody.
The sentence expired on February 6.
In her sentencing remarks, Judge Jennifer English said the break-in clearly involved a degree of planning.
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