ACT News


Parole within sight for frequent offender

A man who has spent much of his adult life in jail has been sentenced to another four years. But he will be eligible for parole next year.

Marshall Steen pleaded guilty in the ACT Supreme Court to three counts of burglary and four of theft.

He also admitted charges of possessing stolen property and fraud arising from a separate incident.

The court heard Steen was on parole when he burgled three properties in November and December last year, taking property valued at more than $25,000.

He gained entry to the homes by smashing rear sliding doors but left his DNA at the scene. That helped police to track him down.

In a pre-sentence report, Steen said he had been sloppy by leaving blood at the crime scene because on some level he hoped he would be caught.


The court heard the 49-year-old had spent 28 years of his adult life in jails in Queensland, New South Wales and the ACT.

One period of incarceration included a 28-month stretch in solitary confinement in an underground cell at Brisbane's notorious Boggo Road jail.

His offending in the ACT began in 2004 after he moved there for work.

Justice Hilary Penfold on Tuesday sentenced Steen to four years in jail, some to be served concurrently with an existing sentence.

The ruling means Steen has been sentenced to serve a total of 14 years in prison.

He will be eligible for parole in November next year. Michael Inman