A MAN who repeatedly tampered with a car wash machine to use it without paying has been fined.

Timothy George Cross, of Pontfaen, Knighton, admitted three charges of dishonestly obtaining services when he appeared at Llandrindod Wells Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.

Rhian Jones, prosecuting, told the court that a mechanic working at a garage in Knighton had noticed wet tyre marks when he arrived at work at 8.30am on November 1, 2016.

When he checked the CCTV, a man could be seen using a device to access the equipment and get it to work without paying, using it to clean his car and driving away.

The same thing happened the following day, but because the vehicle or man could not be identified in the footage, the police were not called.

When the driver pulled the same stunt on November 20, he was not so lucky.

“This time, the garage owner was able to identify the registration and it was reported to the police,” said Ms Jones.

“They traced the car registration to the defendant’s address.

“He was interviewed and made a full admission. He said he had been using his own set of keys, which happened to fit the machine.

“He said he had been doing it for six to eight weeks, once a fortnight.”

She added Cross, 35, had previous convictions for similar crimes, and was released from prison in February following his latest offences in December.

Gareth Walters, for Cross, said the offences were “simply bizarre.”

He added: “He admitted it and admitted to doing it on other occasions which the police were not aware of at the time.”

Mr Walters also said Cross was engaging well with his post-sentence supervision and was due to start a new job in two weeks.

Cross was fined £80 for each of the three offences, and told to pay £20 compensation to the garage owner. He must also pay £85 costs and a £30 surcharge.