Thief jailed for South Coast pub raids

A second man has been sentenced for his part in last year's pub and club raids, which netted more than $25,000 in stolen cash and cigarettes.

The 34-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has been jailed until at least 2018 for his involvement in the crime spree that targeted ATMs and cigarette machines in drinking spots across the region.

Sentencing the man yesterday, Judge Paul Conlon said he had been a major player in the criminal enterprise, which was allegedly a family affair, also involving the man's brothers, father and cousin.

The man, who pleaded guilty to his part in the operation, broke into four pubs along the South Coast, helping to forcibly remove several cigarette machines and load them on to stolen vehicles.

He first struck on March 17, 2010, breaking into the Sutton Forest Inn about 2am before allegedly helping two men push a cigarette machine on to the tray of a stolen ute.

A witness, who was woken to the inn's alarm, saw an ATM, containing nearly $1200 cash, had already been removed.

The second robbery came nearly 12 months later when the man, allegedly accompanied by his cousin and another man, forced entry to Scarborough Hotel.

CCTV footage showed the man running over to the ATM and then shaking it back and forth as he tried to remove it.

When this was unsuccessful, he helped load a cigarette machine, holding nearly $3500, into a nearby vehicle.

The man struck again on March 9 last year when he tried to take an ATM out of the Great Southern Hotel in Berry.

He repeatedly kicked and shoulder-charged the machine but it refused to budge so he then helped remove a cigarette machine and a touch-screen TAB machine and loaded them on to a waiting vehicle.

Two days later, the man, allegedly accompanied by his cousin, hit the Cooee Hotel in St Georges Basin, removing a cigarette machine before fleeing the scene.

Judge Conlon said yesterday the man, and his co-accused, had been equipped and determined in their quest for cigarette machines and ATMs.

He noted substantial property had been stolen and the various hotel owners had been left with significant repair bills.

The court was told the offender had long-standing depression, anxiety and low self-esteem and had been using drugs in the lead-up to the offence.

Judge Conlon said the man was keen to undertake rehabilitation and had shown considerable remorse.