ACT News


Bungling thieves left a trail of evidence

A magistrate says two thieves who carried out an inside job staged to look like an armed robbery left a trail of evidence revealing their ''not particularly sophisticated'' plot.

Tayo Ryan Emery, a 27-year-old with mental health and drug abuse problems was sentenced to jail on Wednesday for three months for his role in the theft and an unrelated drug dealing.

Emery, in jail on remand since October, will serve another month in full-time custody followed by three months in weekend jail after pleading guilty.

Emery entered the Italo-Australian Club in Forrest through a fire exit shortly before midnight on July 28.

He then entered the office and held a knife to the throat of Douglas Geoffrey Gooding, who was counting the takings, and told the 23-year-old, ''righto c---, you know what this is''.

Emery left with more than $10,000.


Most of the incident was captured on CCTV footage.

The crime was first reported as an aggravated robbery, but police soon became suspicious after learning Gooding had failed to lock the fire door and the duty manager door after him.

The pair were charged with joint commission theft, rather than aggravated robbery, after an investigation involving phone intercepts.

This investigation also led to Emery being charged with trafficking MDMA, or ecstasy, after 30 tablets were found in his car.

Magistrate David Mossop described Emery and Gooding's scheme as ''not particularly sophisticated'', and said they left a ''trail of evidence''.

Gooding has also pleaded guilty and is due to be sentenced in the ACT Supreme Court next year.

Mr Mossop said the theft was Gooding's idea and plan, and Emery was therefore less culpable.

Emery's lawyer Alyn Doig said his client's time in custody since his October arrest was his first experience behind bars, and forced him to rethink his life.

The magistrate, also dealing with unrelated driving and failure to appear charges, imposed a three-month, full-time sentence which, taking into account time served, will make Emery eligible for release next month.

Emery will then have to serve another three months in a weekend jail.