PHILIPSBURG–A 24-year-old man, on Thursday, was sentenced by the Court to 46 days and US $100 in fines for the misappropriation of a stolen scooter.
He was fined for not carrying a driver’s licence and for not wearing a helmet while he was riding on the stolen scooter on December 10, 2017.
The scooter in question was among one of 50 motorbikes and 204 outboard engines stolen during an armed robbery at Outdoor World in Cole Bay, one day after Hurricane Irma ravaged St. Maarten on September 6, 2017.
The defendant claimed he had borrowed the scooter from another person, but failed to provide the Police with his friend’s whereabouts or telephone number.
The vehicle had no ignition key, licence plate or registration, and the registration number proved to be tampered with.
The Prosecutor found the defendant guilty of fencing the scooter, which was stolen during what he described as a “cowardly robbery, which left the owner destitute after his store was raided by barbarians.”
In buying the stolen bike the defendant had “stimulated” theft, which he had made “financially attractive,” the Prosecutor stated.
“He should be punished equal to a thief, and there are aggravating circumstances as this happened after Irma,” he said, adding that the suspect had also endangered road safety by riding without a licence and helmet.
For the first offender, the Prosecutor called for a prison sentence of 60 days, 14 of which were to be suspended, on two years’ probation, with a $200 fine.
Attorney-at-law Safira Ibrahim maintained that her client did not know that the scooter was stolen and pleaded for acquittal. For the traffic violations she recommended two fines of $50 each.
The Court did not impose a conditional sentence, as the Judge considered the 46 days the defendant already spent in pre-trial detention since December 10, 2017, sufficient punishment. The defendant was released from prison yesterday, but has to pay $100 in fines.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/73110-man-gets-sentenced-for-fencing-stolen-scooter