Ipswich: Car thief finally behind bars

IPSWICH: A car thief once dubbed one of Suffolk police’s most wanted men is today behind bars after a lengthy manhunt.

William Cassidy, 32, was sentenced to a year in jail after being arrested following a police search lasting nearly 12 months.

Cassidy, whose last known address was Hayes in Middlesex, was sought for a robbery in Ipswich in February 2009.

He and another man test-drove an Audi Quattro with the supposed intention of buying, but then stole the vehicle by dragging the owner out of the car before driving it away.

Cassidy was arrested and charged and pleaded guilty to the offence at Ipswich Crown Court in November last year.

However, he failed to appear for sentencing after the judge indicated he would face imprisonment. A warrant for his arrest was issued in January.

Cassidy was finally sentenced at Ipswich Crown Court on Thursday. He received a 12-month custodial sentence – ten months for theft and one month for each of the failing to surrender to court charges.

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The victim of Cassidy’s theft, Abid Ali, previously told how he was dragged out of his vehicle after being asked to inspect a wheel during a test-drive.

Mr Ali said: “I was half hanging out of the car trying to stop them from taking it.

“I injured my knee and had to let go. The other guy ran back to the Skoda and I ran straight to the Skoda to stop him.

“I grabbed him and tried to pull him out of his car.”

Mr Ali said another car with other men was parked nearby. They approached him as he was tussling with a second thief.

Mr Ali added: “They grabbed him and pulled him into their car and got away with my �15,000 car.”

n Have you been affected by crime? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.