A man who stole a haul of super cars from outside a millionaire’s mansion as a teenager has repeatedly flouted a driving ban imposed as punishment.
George Cowie was locked up for nine months in 2014 after he and two friends made off with sports cars and 4x4s from outside oil tycoon Sean Dreelan’s mansion.
The 22-year-old repeat offender yesterday appeared in the dock at Aberdeen Sheriff Court once again after admitting a seventh driving offence.
The court heard that he got behind the wheel of a Volvo S40 while banned and uninsured last February – when he should not have been on the roads until July 2023.
Sheriff Phillip Mann said the “daft laddie” was running the risk of becoming a “jailbird” but spared him a prison sentence in the hope that Cowie can turn his life around.
The accused was instead ordered to perform 300 hours of unpaid work in the next 12 months, and had his driving ban extended until June 2024.
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In 2015, while he was already banned from the road for the super car thefts, Cowie admitted driving dangerously and at excessive speeds towards a marked police car – causing the officer behind the wheel to swerve to avoid a crash.
When he appeared at Aberdeen Sheriff Court yesterday, it emerged that he had accrued a total of seven driving offences, the latest of which occurred on Clunie Place in Mastrick last February.
Depute fiscal Lynzi Souter said: “Officers on duty saw him get into the driver’s seat and start driving off.
“They were dealing with an unrelated inquiry at the time but did some checks on the computer.
“They discovered the accused was disqualified from driving.”
Cowie’s solicitor, David Sutherland, said his client’s family had been “hit hard” following the death of a close relative and that the accused had been helping his mother at the time he was caught.
He said: “Looking at his recent record, he recognises there was one conviction earlier this year, but prior to that there has been no offending since 2017.
“He knows he might be going to jail for this.”
Sheriff Philip Mann said: “There are other activities for daft laddies – bicycles have been around for a long time.
“This is a young man with much going for him, he should be in a position to find other healthy interests.”
Then speaking directly to Cowie, he said: “It’s on you whether you’re going to be a jailbird or if you’re going to make something of your life.”