A Port Kembla man branded a “wanker” for stealing a Camp Quality donation tin from a shop in Wollongong Central has begged the money’s intended recipients for forgiveness.
Robert Trajcevski’s image was posted on the Mobile Phone Hospital’s Facebook page after CCTV footage captured him swiping the tin, containing $175, from the shop’s counter just minutes after the centre opened on May 15 this year.
The theft was discovered by a shop employee when he started work at 9am.
Staff posted the surveillance footage on their Facebook page along with a request for public assistance in identifying the culprit.
“Sorry CAMP QUALITY but this wanker just stole the charity tin that our wonderful customers filled up. Very Sad,” staff wrote.
“We will make it up to Camp Quality, matching the money raised up in the next tin, but in the meantime if you see this guy around please let us know.”
Trajcevski was arrested a week later.
He pleaded guilty to a larceny charge in Wollongong Local Court on Tuesday, with defence lawyer Tim McKenzie saying his client was deeply ashamed of his actions that day.
“He was on the verge of tears when I was speaking to him earlier,” Mr McKenzie said.
“His offending is inextricably linked to the drug habit he was suffering from at the time.”
Mr McKenzie confirmed Trajcevski had repaid the stolen amount.
In a handwritten letter tendered in court, Trajcevski apologised for his behaviour and sought forgiveness.
“What I say nexed (sic) I truly sincerely mean every word….I am so sorry for what I done (sic) hurting family and kids….Camp Quality need it more then (sic) I did,” he wrote.
“I am ashamed more then (sic) words can say, I am so sorry for doing this...I hope you can forgive me and...not just because I got court (sic).”
Magistrate Brett Thomas described the crime of stealing from a charity as “reprehensible”, however accepted that Trajcevski was attending a drug rehabilitation program and had made significant progress in overcoming his heroin habit.
I am ashamed more then (sic) words can say, I am so sorry for doing this...I hope you can forgive meRobert Trajcevski
He placed Trajcevski on 12-month good behaviour bond.