Man pleads guilty as CCTV footage shows car dealership theft

A man accused of stealing from a car dealership in east London has changed his plea from innocent to guilty after hearing that the case against him was "overwhelming".

Prior to appearing at Croydon Crown Court Dean Burton, 36, had protested his innocence, but quickly changed his mind in the light of CCTV evidence. Mr Burton was caught on camera stealing two windscreens worth £800 from SG Smith car dealership in February this year.

This story highlights how many thefts at car dealerships do not involve making away with the entire vehicle; sometimes parts are stolen because of their market value. That is why it is so important that any car dealer or garage with a set business premises has a combined motor trade insurance policy in place that will protect the vehicles and parts stored on site against theft or damage.

According to the East London Times, Mr Burton originally claimed that he found the windscreens abandoned, telling the court: “I believe I am innocent.”

However, Judge Gold warned Mr Burton’s lawyer that the case against him was “overwhelming” and that “he needs to bite the bullet”. After a conversation with his lawyer, Mr Burton changed his plea to guilty.

The court heard that Mr Burton has 23 previous convictions, 17 of which were related to theft. He was bailed to his home address to reappear for sentencing on 8 April.