A MAN has been sentenced for driving off without paying for hundreds of pounds worth of fuel.

Benjamin Edwards, of Richmond Road in Connah's Quay, appeared at Mold Magistrates Court on Thursday morning.

The 22-year-old admitted seven counts of making off without making payment for fuel between December 2023 and January 2024.

Five of the offences related to Tesco filling station at Broughton, one took place at Dobshill Services and the other happened at Shell Garage at Alltami.

Prosecutor Rhian Jackson told the court the overall amount of fuel taken came to a value of £294.84.

She explained that with the exception of the Dobshill Services incident, all offences were "straight-forward" with the defendant putting fuel in his vehicle and simply driving off without making any contact with staff.


In the Dobshill matter, he did approach the kiosk and told staff he had come out without his wallet and phone.

The defendant completed a 'no means of payment' form and entered into an agreement to return later and pay - but he didn't.

Mike Pugh, defending, told the court: "Mr Edwards was going through a particularly difficult time, mentally.

"He doesn't offer it as an excuse, but by explanation, he says at the time he was working for an Indian takeaway, trying to make some money.

"He felt trapped - being paid £50 a night, £30 of which was going through his vehicle.

"These offences happened at a time when he tried to leave the family home and he turned to drugs, which has had an impact on his behaviour."

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Mr Pugh said given his circumstances at the time, his client was left with little money to pay his bills.

He continued: "In fairness to him he attended a voluntary interview and made full admissions.

"He's genuinely remorseful for his actions and understands he's going to have to pay compensation.

"He's under assessment for autism and ADHD."

Deputy District Judge Paul Conlon handed down a 12 month conditional discharge.

Edwards must pay compensation to the value of the fuel he took, as well as curt costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £26.