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Thief who stole campervan from Inverness then set it alight on the Black Isle

By Court Reporter

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Sheriff Margaret Neilson.
Sheriff Margaret Neilson.

A man who stole a campervan from Inverness was on early release from prison for previous offending.

Ian Grant (41) of HMP Inverness, took the vehicle from an address in Smithton Park, Inverness on October 20 last year.

Inverness Sheriff Court heard a driver saw the vehicle enter a bus lane near the Longman Roundabout at about 4am then saw it being driven erratically across three lanes and with no lights on before heading north on the A9.

Depute fiscal David Morton said the witness was concerned that the driver was drunk and phoned the police.

“At about 4.40am a call was made to the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service by another member of the public reporting a campervan on fire on the unclassified road near to the B9161 at Munlochy,” Mr Morton said.

At 5.30am police found Grant, who appeared to be heavily under the influence of alcohol.

He told officers that he knew how to steal vehicles but that they had not seen him steal the campervan and that he had not stolen it.

“At this point there had been no mention of a stolen vehicle by either of the police officers,” the fiscal said.

Later at Burnett Road police station in Inverness Grant refused to provide a breath sample.

Grant admitted stealing the campervan, driving it without a licence or insurance and to setting it on fire, destroying it and its contents.

Sheriff Margaret Neilson deferred sentence until February 14 to investigate the unexpired period of the prison sentence Grant had been serving previously.

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