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Last Updated: Monday, 29 January 2007, 18:09 GMT
eBay fraudster stole fuel cards
Phillip Shortman
Shortman intended to sell the diesel for half the price at the pump
A 19-year-old known as "eBay boy" has admitted buying thousands of pounds worth of diesel with stolen fuel cards.

At Cardiff Crown Court Phillip Shortman, a married father-of-two from Pontypool, admitted theft, deception and interfering with a motor vehicle.

He was jailed for eight months, suspended for two years, and ordered to do 200 hours work in the community.

In 2005 he hired stretch limos and bought designer clothes from a 45k con on the auction website eBay.

Stuart McLeese, prosecuting, said: "Shortman was found with one stolen fuel card when he was caught raiding a scrapyard for spare parts for his car.

"Soon after this offence, Shortman acquired another card which he used to buy more than 3,000 worth of diesel.

In your short life you have acquired a long list of convictions
Judge David Wyn Morgan

"He told police he would sell the diesel on to gypsies for half the price at the pump."

The court heard how Shortman, of New Inn, was arrested after staff at the petrol station became suspicious.

'Deviousness and dishonesty'

Laurence Jones, defending, said: "These were not sophisticated crimes. He made no attempt to hide his identity.

"He comes before the courts with a certain amount of notoriety, but he is trying hard not to fall foul of the law again."

Judge David Wyn Morgan told him: "In your short life you have acquired a long list of convictions marked by their deviousness and dishonesty."

In 2005, aged 17, Shortman was sent to a detention centre after conning eBay customers out of at least 45,000.

He had been called "eBay boy" by police after "selling" non-existent goods and tricking dozens of people out of money which he spent on a luxury lifestyle.

But while awaiting sentence for that crime, he continued his deception by tricking Wales rugby fans out of 8,000 with fictional match tickets, again on eBay where he had signed up with the site again.

He escaped a second spell behind bars for that after the judge at Newport Crown Court was told he had reformed while in detention.

Boy's eBay con nets 45,000
12 Oct 04 |  Wales

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