Four sentenced for Pontarddulais silver band thefts
Four men have been sentenced for stealing £15,000 of instruments from Pontardulais Town Band, which were sold to a scrap dealer.
Andrew Beer, 39, was jailed for 24 weeks at Swansea Crown Court. Christopher Davies, 23 and Jason Power, 36, were given suspended sentences.
Dealer Marcus Egan, 34, was given a suspended sentence for handling stolen goods.
The instruments, sold on for £61, were crushed at Egan's business.
Power and Egan were both given 24-week jail terms that were suspended for 21 weeks. Davies was given a 16-week jail term, suspended for 21 weeks.
All three were also ordered to do 120 hours unpaid community work.
Egan was also given a 12-month supervision order and told pay £500 compensation to the silver band, who were formed more than a century ago.
The instruments, including a tuba and large gong, were taken in a break-in at their band hall in Pontarddulais.
They were then taken to Egan Metals in Gorseinon, and Egan paid the burglars £61 before crushing the instruments.
It was claimed Egan had been warned about the theft after a call from a band member but claimed in court he had not associated the instruments to those described to him.
But he was found guilty at a trial.
The three other men admitted burglary.
The court heard that Egan and Power had no previous convictions, while Davies had previous youth offences.
However Beer, who had been described as the ring-leader, had previous convictions, including burglary.
Egan was told to pay £500 compensation to the band but after the case band members expressed disappointment, saying their insurance premium had gone up £700 a year.
In spite of that, the instruments that were stolen have been replaced, and the judge told the court the band was well placed to thrive in the future.
Addressing the men however, he said that the band's promising future was "no thanks" to them.