Car thief runs out of chances

By Cam Lucadou-Wells

A PAKENHAM car thief has been told by a court he’s run out of chances of serving community-based sentences and has been ordered into youth detention.
Aaron Anthony Galea, 20, had been arrested in Pakenham on 16 November after a relative reported to police that Galea had driven a stolen vehicle into their driveway.
He was unlicensed and was breaching his second community corrections order.
Galea was also on bail at the time over the aggravated burglary and theft of an Audi and a Citreon at a Lynbrook address in October, as well as for driving a Nissan Skyline stolen from Seaford on 10 November.
The Audi and Citreon were found dumped in Cranbourne and Glen Waverley, and the Skyline found in the Pakenham driveway.
Galea also pleaded guilty to a petrol drive-off in Narre Warren North on 25 July in a Suzuki Swift stolen during a Cranbourne North burglary two days earlier.
He was charged as well with the breach of a family violence intervention order.
The court was told on 21 November that Galea had spent the past week in adult custody for the first time since his arrest.
Galea’s lawyer said there was little option but for Galea to continue his incarceration – preferably in a youth detention facility.
The accused’s mental health had suffered, and his ice use increased when his best friend took his own life in July, the lawyer said.
During this descent, Galea ceased contact with Corrections staff supervising his community corrections order, the court was told.
“I can’t describe any further how upset it made him. He didn’t know how to handle that,” the lawyer said.
“If he engaged with Corrections, he could have got treatment but unfortunately he didn’t.”
Magistrate Jack Vandersteen said Galea was still a young person, who had family support, insight and intelligence, but had committed similar offences prior to the friend’s death.
Galea had also previously breached four youth supervision orders, Mr Vandersteen noted.
“You’re at a point where you’re not complying with anything.
“It’s an absolute waste for the victims and yourself when you offend in this manner.”
Galea was also re-sentenced for two car-theft offences, handling stolen goods and breach of intervention orders that led to the latest corrections order.
The effective sentence was six months in youth detention – though Galea would be released after three months on youth parole.
“Youth Justice will work closely with you,” Mr Vandersteen said.
“They will offer and put things in place that gives you a chance if you comply.”

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