A man has been jailed for more than four years after using a digger to steal a cash machine containing more than £44,000.
Michael Broomfield, 33, while acting along with others, used a digger during the raid on the ATM at Scotmid Foods, Craigour Road in Torphins.
Chains were attached to the cash machine to lift it into the boot of a gold Chrysler car. But the getaway was foiled when the car broke down – and Broomfield’s fingerprint was found on the vehicle.
As Broomfield was led away in handcuffs to begin his sentence, he exclaimed: “Stitched me right up.”
Fiscal depute Sally McAuley told Aberdeen Sheriff Court the digger had been stolen from a building site.
She said at around 1.40am on February 28 a witness near the shop heard an alarm sounding followed by “loud banging” and male voices shouting “come on”.
A number of witnesses gathered and filmed the incident on their phones.
She said: “They saw the males force entry to the shop and attach chains to the ATM.”
They witnessed the men using the digger to lift the ATM into the boot of the car. Ms McAuley said at around 2am another witness came across the gold Chrysler unoccupied with the engine running.
She said: “The witness saw the boot was open and there was an ATM lying on the road directly behind the vehicle.”
The fiscal depute added the cash machine would cost around £3,500 to replace and contained more than £44,000 at the time. All the money was recovered.
Broomfield was identified in various CCTV images.
Ms McAuley said: “Fingerprints were recovered from the Chrysler’s driver’s door and found to match the accused.”
Broomfield, a prisoner of HMP Grampian, pled guilty to theft of a vehicle and to breaking into Scotmid Foods and stealing an ATM, all while acting along with others.
Defence agent David Sutherland said his client “apologises for his conduct”, adding he “accepts it was entirely unacceptable for this crime to be committed”.
He said: “It was never going to succeed given the noise that was created. The vehicle broke down and that’s why it was found where it was.”
Sheriff Graeme Napier said: “If the car hadn’t broken down you would have gotten away with the safe and all that money in it.
“It seems to me the appropriate way to deal with this matter is imposing a custodial sentence.”
He jailed him for four years and four months.