Basketball player on burglary charge claimed he had Olympic call-up to avoid court
A basketball player claimed he could not turn up at court to face burglary charges as he was taking part in the Olympics.
But yesterday Rodney Trebeluske was called a "bare-faced liar" by a judge and jailed for 70 weeks.
Leicester Crown Court heard the 21-year-old also lied to the police about a burglary at his student accommodation in Loughborough.
He said he had been stabbed by the intruders – when in fact he was the culprit.
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He gave officers a false description which led them to detain two innocent people for 17 hours.
Yesterday, Judge Philip Head told Trebeluske: "You got your advocate to lie on your behalf to say you were playing in the Olympics as an excuse not to attend court.
"You are a barefaced liar. You lied to the police about the burglary and were reckless to the outcome which led to two people being arrested and spending nearly a day in custody."
Rob Harland, prosecuting, said police were called to student accommodation in Oxford Street last June after a student complained his room had been broken into and his computer containing his dissertation had been stolen.
The victim shared the house with Trebeluske, who claimed he had been stabbed when he disturbed burglars.
Trebeluske told police two intruders fled in a long red car with tinted windows.
Mr Harland said police responded to the description and shortly afterwards detained the car and a man and a woman. They spent 17 hours in custody until it was discovered Trebeluske had cut himself breaking a glass panel over the door to the other student's room.
Mr Harland said Trebeluske revealed he had a grudge against the student, who he believed had been stealing his food from a communal fridge.
The burglary was committed while Trebeluske was serving a year long community order imposed for stealing a television belonging to his landlord. At the time he told police the set had been stolen by burglars.
Trebeluske, of Sydenham Road, Croydon, admitted burgling the student flat, perverting the course of justice and twice failing to attend court to receive his sentence in June and July.
Olwen Davies, mitigating, said her client was immature but had handed himself into the police in Croydon.
She said he was a promising basketball player, adding: "If he goes to prison he will not be able take up opportunities to pursue the sport in the USA."
She said the victim's computer had been recovered, complete with the dissertation notes.