2nd Jul, 2022

Rampage at Land Rover forecourt causes £400k damage

A MAN who was angry at not getting paid by a car valeting company decided to get his revenge by going on the rampage on the forecourt of a Stratford Land Rover dealership.

Driving a £200 Ford Mondeo with no MoT, Vasile Turcan smashed into a dozen brand-new Land Rovers at the Guy Salmon dealership, causing a staggering £400,000 worth of damage.

He then waited around until the police arrived and he was arrested, magistrates in Leamington have heard.

The 36-year-old, of no fixed address, and who had been living in the Mondeo, pleaded guilty to two charges of causing criminal damage – to the Guy Salmon vehicles and an ATM machine.

Prosecutor Baldev Atwal said Turcan, who also admitted having no insurance and driving with excess alcohol, had bought the Mondeo two weeks before the incident.

He began living out of the car, and on Saturday June 29, he was parked on the car park of the Tesco store in Birmingham Road, having spent the night there.

He had made an alcoholic drink from mouthwash alcohol, and a CCTV recording showed him having a reaction to that and suffering a nose bleed.

At around 2pm, at a time when the store was busy, Turcan tried to get some money from an ATM machine at Tesco, and damaged it with his fists out of frustration when he was unable to do so.

He then drove to the Guy Salmon Land Rover dealership about five minutes away, and CCTV showed him drive onto the forecourt before deliberately smashing into 12 brand-new Land Rovers.

Turcan remained at the scene when police arrived and arrested him. The level of alcohol in his breath was 48, compared to the legal limit of 35.

When interviewed later in the day, Turcan said he had been employed by Autoclenz who had a contract with Guy Salmon to valet their vehicles, but had not been paid for two weeks and was owed around £400.

He said as a result, he had been unable to pay his rent and was living in the car, so he had taken it upon himself to damage the vehicles so Autoclenz would lose its Guy Salmon contract.

Mr Atwal pointed out the £400,000 figure put on the damage was ‘a conservative estimate which may well rise.

He said in view of that, it was appropriate for Turcan to be dealt with at the crown court, rather than by the magistrates, and Catherine McMillan, defending, agreed.

Ms McMillan explained that Turcan had been working for the valeting company to raise money because he wanted to get back to Moldova.

Sending the case to Warwick Crown Court, where he is expected to appear at the end of July, the magistrates remanded Turcan in custody and ordered a pre-sentence report on him.

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