A MECHANIC who bought stolen vehicles to strip down for parts tried to escape police in a high-speed chase with his four-month-old baby in his car.
Mark Trepass, who was yesterday jailed for more than two years, kept stolen cars in a lock-up in Great Lever which was raided by police in March.
But officers were unable to trace Trepass, who rented the units in Weston Street, until he was spotted by plain clothed police on March 13 driving a stolen Nissan Qashqai.
The 31-year-old sped away from the officers causing a police chase, Bolton Crown Court heard.
In Plodder Lane, Farnworth, Trepass drove on to the opposite carriageway, losing police in the process, Mark Friend, prosecuting, told the court.
Witnesses saw Trepass, his partner, and their four-month-old child abandon the car in Lark Street, Farnworth. The father-of-four was later arrested.
Iain Johnstone, defending, said Trepass had been renting the units as he had found a gap in the market in selling Rover MG parts.
But when his business started to struggle he was unable to afford the lease for the property.
Most of the hoard of stolen cars found had been taken from outside people’s homes or following burglaries.
Officers also discovered cars with stolen number plates.
Mr Johnstone said the defendant had since been offered work outside the motor industry.
Recorder Jeremy Lasker said: “Police found remains of vehicles that you had bought cheaply for the purpose of stripping down and selling on for profit.
“You were a receiver that dealt regularly with thieves and burglars providing an outlet for their stolen goods.
“You did it for money effectively on a commercial basis.”
The defendant has a catalogue of previous convictions including driving while disqualified eight times and handling stolen goods where he towed away cars which he thought were abandoned but they occasionally were not.
Trepass, of Norfolk Close, Hindley, admitted eight counts of handling stolen goods, driving while disqualified, dangerous driving, driving without insurance.
He was sentenced to 26 months in prison and banned from driving for three years Police will now try to claw back his illegal profits through a proceeds of crime hearing.
- The court lists Trepass as having an alternatively spelled surname as an alias - spelled Treppas.