32kg of lychees were taken and sold from a Silkwood backyard last November.
32kg of lychees were taken and sold from a Silkwood backyard last November.

Brazen lychee swindler cops fine

A YOUNG Cassowary Coast man who was one of three men who took fruit from a Silkwood property in 2019 has been fined.

Sebastian James Capponi, 23, took and sold 32kg of lychees from a tree in the backyard of an address owned by commercial farmer Matthew Lizzio on November 16 last year.

Capponi was the only man charged over the incident.

The Innisfail Magistrates Court heard Capponi was told a day earlier to leave the property and not return after the victim found the defendant and one other man taking lychees from the same tree.

The court was told Mr Lizzio was angered by the stealing of the fruit but thought on the first occasion it might have been an honest mistake and as such allowed Capponi to take the lychees he'd already picked with him when he left the property.

A single lychee tree was the target of a brazen fruit theft in Silkwood. PICTURE: STEWART McLEAN
A single lychee tree was the target of a brazen fruit theft in Silkwood. PICTURE: STEWART McLEAN

However, Capponi and two accomplices returned at 10.30pm the next day.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Christie Mahoney told the court Mr Lizzio attended the property just after midnight and found the lychee swindlers cutting and breaking large branches off the tree and placing them in the back of a silver Mazda ute registered to the defendant.

When confronted, Capponi entered his vehicle through his passenger window, reversed and sped out of the property while picking up another man who had fled on foot.

Capponi managed to sell 32kg of the stolen lychees for approximately $600.

Defence solicitor Chris Blishen said his client had shown remorse for his actions by instructing him to ask how much restitution would need to be paid to the victim.

Capponi was fined $350 for three charges and ordered to pay $600 in restitution to Mr Lizzio.

Innisfail Senior Constable Jane Moran said it was imperative people didn't trespass.

"You can't be taking fruit without permission," Sen-Constable Moran said.

"You will be charged."


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