A man has been caught stealing fuel from a petrol station for the fourth time.
Steven Booth claims he forgot to return to pay for his diesel after telling staff at the Murco filling station in Thongsbridge that he had no cash on him.
But Kirklees Magistrates’ Court heard that the 28-year-old had committed an identical offence three times previously, prompting District Judge Michael Fanning to comment: “It seems you are a bit forgetful in this respect.”
He pleaded guilty to making off without payment on December 12 last year.
Booth, of Mount Road in Marsden, told staff at the Huddersfield Road petrol station that he’d forgotten to bring cash.
He filled out a form with his details but then failed to return later as promised, leaving the business £42.31 out of pocket.
In January this year he committed the same offence at a branch of Sainsbury’s in the town.
He also stole fuel in 2009 and June 2015 but the matters were either resolved with no further action or a community resolution order.
Booth, who was not represented, said that he was moving house at the time of the latest offence and he simply forgot about it.
Judge Fanning replied: “It seems you are a bit forgetful in this respect.
“It’s become a bit of a habit and you are accumulating a criminal record.”
Booth was ordered to pay the petrol station compensation for the stolen fuel as well as £85 costs and £85 victim surcharge.
He must complete 50 hours of unpaid work and Judge Fanning warned him: “Unlike your promise to the garage, if you don’t keep your promise to the court you will be back here and may end up in prison.”