A 40-year-old man has been found hiding in a fridge by WA Police after allegedly stealing $ 150,000 worth of property from a home near Lancelin.
- Police say the 40-year-old had been on the run for six months
- Most of the allegedly stolen goods have now been located
- The accused will remain in custody until he fronts Joondalup Magistrates Court on June 24
Police allege the man broke into a shed in Ledge Point on April 27, stealing tools, industrial machinery and a Mitsubishi truck.
CCTV captured the vehicle driving south towards Perth, leading Joondalup detectives to a home in Butler.
During a search, the alleged thief was found hiding in a fridge and taken into custody.
Officer in charge at Lancelin Police station, Sergeant Michael Paterson, said he had never seen a case quite like it.
“Before [the arresting officers] went to the address, there was a briefing… and the lead investigator advised everybody to check everywhere, including the fridge, “he said.
Police say there had been a warrant out for the man’s arrest since last year after he failed to show up to court over unrelated charges.
‘Mate, the shed door’s open’
Bruce Loughton owns the property in Ledge Point and said it was his brother who found the shed had been ransacked.
“My brother and his family were going to the house for that weekend,” he said.
“He called me and said, ‘Mate, the shed door’s open’. I asked if the truck was there. He replied, ‘What truck?'”
Mr Loughton had all but given up hope of the truck’s return.
“I’d actually ordered a brand new truck on the Monday afternoon, then I got the call Tuesday morning that they’d found the old one, so I did not think they’d find it,” he said.
It was discovered in “exquisite condition” in Wangara.
Asked how he would celebrate the truck’s return, Mr Loughton said, “I’ve got to go and get a load of wood for my mum.”
The accused will remain in custody until he fronts Joondalup Magistrates Court on June 24.