A man stole a mobile phone from an Emerald gaming room.
A man stole a mobile phone from an Emerald gaming room.

CCTV showed 61yo man pinching phone from tavern pokies area

A 61-YEAR-old Central Queensland man was caught stealing a mobile phone that was left at a poker machine.

Gregory Ross Hurley was in the gaming lounge at Emerald's Maraboon Tavern when the person using the machine directly behind him walked away, leaving their phone on the machine.

CCTV captured footage about 1.30pm on October 19 of Hurley walking over and placing the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus in his left pocket before leaving the premises soon after, Emerald's Magistrates Court heard today.

Police prosecutor Paul Cramp told the court police attained a search warrant in November and attended Hurley's house, where they were unable to locate the phone.

Hurley told them he remembered picking it up but left it at a nearby ATM machine at the tavern, however, a review of CCTV footage proved that false.

Sgt Cramp said the phone was yet to be recovered.

Magistrate Robert Walker said the appropriate action would have been to hand the phone in, rather than keeping it for himself.

Mr Walker said the maximum penalty for the crime was several years' imprisonment.

Hurley pleaded guilty to one count of stealing, was fined $750 and ordered to pay $380 to the victim.