Britain's busiest robber caught

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The Independent Online
A ONE-MAN crime wave hit a town when a young thief was freed early from prison, a court heard yesterday.

Darren Machon, 22, committed 75 new offences in just 90 days after being released on probation for good behaviour. The court was told his crimes included stealing cars worth more than pounds 300,000.

Cardiff Crown Court heard that when officers finally arrested him for 10 crimes he asked for 65 other offences to be taken into consideration.

Mr Lee Ingham, prosecuting, said the crime spree began when Machon was released on probation last October.

He said: "Machon was granted early release after he was jailed for 18 months last June. But less than a week later he stole a Vauxhall Astra and three months after that he had taken 28 cars. He was arrested last December and admitted three crimes. Machon was granted bail but it proved no deterrent. He was picked up again when police cornered him after a high-speed chase in a stolen car."

Sentencing Machon to two years, Judge Gerald Price told him: "At the age of 22 you already have a formidable record. However, credit must be given to you for admitting your previous wrongdoings."