A sneak thief was caught by new technology after stealing an iPhone from an unlocked house in Elgin.
The owner of the phone had an application which could trace it if it went missing and it led police to a block of flats in Covesea Road, Elgin on August 1.
Officers could still hear the phone ringing and found it in a recycling bin belonging to 37-year-old Leam Cameron’s accommodation there.
At Inverness Sheriff Court, Cameron, admitted by video link, theft from two properties between July 31 and August 1.
The court was told that the occupiers of a property in Balmoral Terrace, Elgin left a door unlocked and discovered items were missing the following morning.
Amongst the stolen goods were purses with £70 in cash, bank cards and a box of foreign coins.
On the same morning, a couple in Harrison Terrace noticed their back door was open and then that a wallet was missing.
Fiscal depute Robert Weir said that further checks revealed missing car keys and an iPhone.
He added that all the stolen goods were recovered by police when they searched Cameron’s flat.
Defence solicitor Grant Daglish said: “He is more used to prison than public life. When he was released from prison in April, he went straight into lockdown and had no support network.
“Drugs are responsible for much of his offending and he has no memory of events.”
His request for a deferral so a background report and drug treatment and testing order assessment to be carried out was granted by Sheriff Margaret Neilson.
The Sheriff commented that Cameron had “a shocking record for dishonesty.”
She told him: “Don’t assume you will get a non custodial sentence because of this. But I will give you the chance.”
Cameron was remanded in custody until his next appearance on December 17.