A FORMER soldier working as a driver for a delivery firm made unscheduled drop-offs of pallets of spirits worth £65,000.
But Michael King was caught after the businesses which should have received the vodka and single malt whisky contacted DHL Express to complain.
And at Warwick Crown Court, King pleaded guilty to stealing four pallets of vodka and two of whisky from the company in June and July last year.
King, 41, of New Street, Rugby, was jailed for nine months. Prosecutor Nigel Wilkins said at the time King was working as an agency driver for DHL based on the Prologis business park in Coventry.
But at the beginning of June he came to an arrangement with three people to divert from his planned route when he was carrying large amount of spirits.
King drove to Storage World in Rugby where the other men unloaded two pallets of whisky and vodka on each of three occasions. But the thefts were quite easily detected because customers had already started to complain to DHL about not receiving their deliveries of vodka.
He said he was recruited by other men at a pub and, because of his financial circumstances, was tempted to take part when they offered him £2,500 for each pallet taken.
Sean Logan, defending, said: “He bitterly regrets his actions. He is now working self-employed, and is willing to offer £200 a month to his former employers.” “
Mr Logan said King had previously been in the Army for ten years, serving in the Falklands, Northern Ireland and with a peace-keeping force in Rwanda.
Judge Marten Coates told King: “I’m sorry to see someone like you in this court - but you are here because you succumbed to temptation.”