13 Dec 2013

Soldier fined but escapes dismissal

9:23 pm on 13 December 2013

An SAS soldier has escaped being detained or dismissed from the military for stealing Defence Force property.

On Friday, a court martial has found that the 30-year-old stole three gun accessories and unlawfully possessed Thunderflash explosives which simulate battle sounds.

The soldier, whose name is suppressed, was found not guilty on several other charges, including unlawfully possessing a block of the plastic explosive Semtex.

The prosecution had asked for a sentence of detention and also dismissal.

But Judge Chris Hodson said there was no loss to the Defence Force, because equipment the soldier had purchased himself ended up being returned to the Army's stores.

Instead, Judge Hodson fined him $4700, telling the soldier that he previously had a very good record and believed that he could learn from the experience.

In a statement to the court, the soldier said he now regrets joining the SAS and the Army.