VIDEO: Blackburn charity rat strikes again

Lancashire Telegraph: THIEF AT WORK Carl Mason caught on CCTV at the Santander bank moments before he stole the Poppy collection box THIEF AT WORK Carl Mason caught on CCTV at the Santander bank moments before he stole the Poppy collection box

A THIEF stole a charity box just 11 days after being released from prison for offences including the theft of other collection tins.

Carl Anthony Mason, 30, was branded ‘despicable’ by police and charity leaders. Mason claimed he had taken the collection box for a children’s charity in Blackburn Market to repay the British Legion from whom he stole last year.

Blackburn town centre sergeant, Dave Clarke said: “It’s another disgusting offence by a despicable criminal who continues to use excuse after excuse for stealing from charities and the people who need the money most.

“He did not waste any time and stole the charity box from Blackburn Market on November 25 - just 11 days after being released from prison.


“On his last appearance at Blackburn magistrates he showed remorse and cried before the court and assured them that he was disgusted by his own actions.

“Twelve months later he has committed the same offence in the same kind of circumstances.”

Last November Mason, of Shear Brow, pleaded guilty to stealing Royal British legion collection tins from Gala Bingo, in Ainsworth Street; Blockbuster, in Great Bolton Street; Halifax, in King William Street; Santander, in King William Street, and Boots stores in both Great Bolton Street and in Fishergate, Preston - which resulted in a 26 week prison sentence. One theft took place on Armistice Day.

Since then Mason had been sentenced to another 26 weeks in prison by Preston Magistrates for theft offences and another 10 weeks in August for theft.

On Tuesday, Blackburn Magistrates sentenced him to a further 12 weeks in jail after stealing a collection box for the Lucy Air Ambulance for Children, a charity which helps transport sick children to hospital.

The court heard how Mason claimed he would have given the stolen money to the poppy appeal he stole from last year.

Prosecutor Catherine Allan said it was ‘warped logic’ if Mason was really stealing from one charity to give to another.

Mason pleaded guilty to burglary at Blackburn market, which was closed at the time, and theft of a charity box.

He was seen in the market hall by a member of the Mall staff and detained until police arrived.

The charity box was discovered in the gents toilets where Mason had been found.

Miss Allan said: “He had only recently been released from prison when he committed this offence. When he was arrested he had a pair of scissors on him and in the past he has used these to cut the strings on charity boxes.”

Michael Blacklidge, defending, said: “What he did last November was reprehensible and he still carries the stigma of that.

“As soon as he was arrested he referred to that and expressed remorse.”

Mr Blacklidge said the time Mason had spent out of custody in the last 12 months was just weeks, not months.

“He hoped he would be able to break the cycle following his latest release and had been out for two and a half weeks.

• ABOVE: The video of Carl Mason taking the tin last November in Santander, King William Street 

“The catalyst for this was the tragic death of his ex-girlfriend in a hit and run accident in Preston. He bought a bottle of Jack Daniels and some valium and that was with him for the weekend.”

Gerry Stephens, 74, chair of Blackburn’s Royal British Legion, said: “This thief is disgusting. He has stolen collection boxes for soldiers who have lost their lives and limbs, and now he’s stolen from a children’s charity. He has no sympathy for anybody or any charity. Twelve weeks is not long enough.”

Amanda Homan-Green, from Lucy Air Ambulance, said the national charity provides transfers for critically ill children - from premature babies to children aged 16.

She said: “I think this man is despicable and should be very ashamed of himself.

“Every penny we raise goes towards the transfer of the next critically ill child to another hospital for treatment.”

Comments (12)

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11:57am Thu 29 Nov 12

fabinribblevalley says...

You will never get these scumbags to reform and live honest lives using this modern kid glove treatment, tell the human rites brigade where to go and bring back the birch, this is the only language they will ever understand.
You will never get these scumbags to reform and live honest lives using this modern kid glove treatment, tell the human rites brigade where to go and bring back the birch, this is the only language they will ever understand. fabinribblevalley

12:50pm Thu 29 Nov 12

superfly agaric says...

Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about.
Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about. superfly agaric

1:36pm Thu 29 Nov 12

makaveli96 says...

All criminals should be hung!

Easy solution!

No need for prisons!

A "GOOD" society!

Reduced Carbon Footprint!
All criminals should be hung! Easy solution! No need for prisons! A "GOOD" society! Reduced Carbon Footprint! makaveli96

1:40pm Thu 29 Nov 12

Rover-The-Moon says...

Should be much stronger sentences, make an example of this scumbag! Should also make him do endless community service for the charity he stole from! As well as long sentence. What a snake, and low life.
Should be much stronger sentences, make an example of this scumbag! Should also make him do endless community service for the charity he stole from! As well as long sentence. What a snake, and low life. Rover-The-Moon

8:16pm Thu 29 Nov 12

woolywords says...

superfly agaric wrote:
Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about.
You really are too kind to him.
Would that be, one lump or two?
[quote][p][bold]superfly agaric[/bold] wrote: Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about.[/p][/quote]You really are too kind to him. Would that be, one lump or two? woolywords

10:27pm Thu 29 Nov 12

Paul The Octopus Lives! says...

Blackburn Magistrates; why on earth did you give him a pathetic 12 weeks? Is he the real disgrace or is it you lot? How on earth can his length of sentence be REDUCED every time he commits a theft of a charity box? I would start a charity "SPINE TRANSPLANTS FOR BLACKBURN MAGISTRATES" but this low life would only steal the tins.
Blackburn Magistrates; why on earth did you give him a pathetic 12 weeks? Is he the real disgrace or is it you lot? How on earth can his length of sentence be REDUCED every time he commits a theft of a charity box? I would start a charity "SPINE TRANSPLANTS FOR BLACKBURN MAGISTRATES" but this low life would only steal the tins. Paul The Octopus Lives!

11:18pm Thu 29 Nov 12

2 for 5p says...

woolywords wrote:
superfly agaric wrote:
Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about.
You really are too kind to him.
Would that be, one lump or two?
That wouldn't be a nasty little threat to him would it
[quote][p][bold]woolywords[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]superfly agaric[/bold] wrote: Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about.[/p][/quote]You really are too kind to him. Would that be, one lump or two?[/p][/quote]That wouldn't be a nasty little threat to him would it 2 for 5p

8:10am Fri 30 Nov 12

woolywords says...

2 for 5p wrote:
woolywords wrote:
superfly agaric wrote:
Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about.
You really are too kind to him.
Would that be, one lump or two?
That wouldn't be a nasty little threat to him would it
Certainly not... You know that you aren't supposed to do things like that. Am sure that he is a wonderful individual, fully deserving of our deepest sympathy for all the ills of the World that beset him, that drive him commit offences that the rest of the criminal underworld consider reprehensible.
Makes you wonder if he was capable of robbing his own Mum for what he needs, doesn't it?
Modern legal pragmatism is to look at outcomes, isn't it? What do you think the concomitant effect of publishing the mans image is going to be? Some tea and sympathy do you think or a baying mob of yokels, carrying pitchforks and seeking retribution?

Answers on a postcard..
[quote][p][bold]2 for 5p[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]woolywords[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]superfly agaric[/bold] wrote: Thanks for the mugshot, LT - I do hope I bump into this member of the public whilst out and about.[/p][/quote]You really are too kind to him. Would that be, one lump or two?[/p][/quote]That wouldn't be a nasty little threat to him would it[/p][/quote]Certainly not... You know that you aren't supposed to do things like that. Am sure that he is a wonderful individual, fully deserving of our deepest sympathy for all the ills of the World that beset him, that drive him commit offences that the rest of the criminal underworld consider reprehensible. Makes you wonder if he was capable of robbing his own Mum for what he needs, doesn't it? Modern legal pragmatism is to look at outcomes, isn't it? What do you think the concomitant effect of publishing the mans image is going to be? Some tea and sympathy do you think or a baying mob of yokels, carrying pitchforks and seeking retribution? Answers on a postcard.. woolywords

11:12am Fri 30 Nov 12

KamikazeTurkey says...

Lock him up.
Lock him up. KamikazeTurkey

3:15pm Fri 30 Nov 12

Black Car Guy. says...

Is it not his human right to steal the tins?
Is it not his human right to steal the tins? Black Car Guy.

2:19am Sat 1 Dec 12

woolywords says...

Black Car Guy. wrote:
Is it not his human right to steal the tins?
You might have a valid point there, given that an Irish pedophile has gained a court judgement to have a Facebook page that names and shames perverts has to be taken down this weekend.
[quote][p][bold]Black Car Guy.[/bold] wrote: Is it not his human right to steal the tins?[/p][/quote]You might have a valid point there, given that an Irish pedophile has gained a court judgement to have a Facebook page that names and shames perverts has to be taken down this weekend. woolywords

5:13pm Sat 1 Dec 12

bigdee123 says...

chop his hands off.
chop his hands off. bigdee123

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