Copper and fire works in car

A Cowra man will not be eligible for release from prison until November after stealing copper pipes and wire and being found with fireworks in his possession.

Phillip Charles Azzopardi, 32 of Phillip Street in Cowra was sentenced in Young Local Court on Tuesday when he appeared via audio-visual link from Junee Correctional Facility.

Azzopardi faced several charges including larceny, goods suspected stolen in/on premises (motor vehicle) and possessing an explosive device in a public place.

Magistrate Michael O’Brien convicted Azzopardi and sentenced him to 12 months in prison, six months non-parole as well as three months in prison for other matters making Azzopardi eligible for parole in November.

According to the police facts submitted to the court Azzopardi was caught via closed circuit television stealing between $15,000 to $20,000 worth of copper pipe and wire along the railway line between Harden and Galong between December 6 and December 10 last year.

Though police were unable to ascertain if it was Azzopardi on the camera footage the accused when questioned in relation to a separate copper wire theft made full admissions of taking the items.

On December 21 at about 4.45pm police pulled over Azzopardi and searched his vehicle. During the search police located a large amount of copper items in the boot of the vehicle. Police believed the copper items were stolen due to Azzopardi already being charged recently for stolen copper wire.

At the time of questioning Azzopardi claimed the wire and pipe were collected from the Cowra tip, however enquiries with Council and its employees showed Azzopardi had not been at the facility.

While police were handling the pipes they discovered some of the pipes had been filled with sand to catch a higher price when sold.

About 7.45am on October 25 police were patrolling around Young when they saw Azzopardi entering a vehicle at the corner of Lovell and Zouch streets.

The RMS had already questioned Azzopardi over missing copper wire and pipes however police had yet to speak with him over the matter.

The officers approached Azzopardi who was sitting in the driver’s seat of the vehicle and immediately noticed his eyes were glazed. Azzopardi returned a negative breath test and drug test.

The vehicle was searched and needles and bags were found. Inside one bag police found a three tube firework.