Man caught with fake Italian ID card given unpaid work

Sam Fearn, 19, of Genesta Drive, Thurston, near Bury St Edmunds was given a suspended sentence at Ipswich Crown Court

Flaviano Preci was sentenced at Ipswich Crown Court - Credit: Charlotte Bond

A man caught in possession of a fake identity card in Newmarket has been handed 100 hours of unpaid work. 

Police stopped a black Mercedes in Newmarket on June 15 last year and following a search, a wallet was discovered, Ipswich Crown Court heard. 

Officers located a wallet in the vehicle belonging to Flaviano Preci, 21, other paperwork in his name, and two sets of passport photographs, Simon Gladwell, prosecuting, told the court. 

The officer discovered an Italian identification card in a different name, with Preci's photograph, the court heard. 

The driver of the Mercedes told the officer that the wallet belonged to his friend 'Flavs'. 

The wallet was seized and the identification card was analysed by the Italian authorities. 

The ID card was found to be false, Mr Gladwell said. 

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Preci was told to attend Bury St Edmunds Police Investigation Centre, and was arrested on the same day. 

In police interview, Preci told officers that he had met an Italian woman in a park, who told him she "would make him a prince". 

He gave her a photograph, and she went off before returning later with the fraudulent ID card, Mr Gladwell said. 

Preci said he did not know the name of the woman and believed it was a prank, the court heard. 

Preci's mobile phone was also seized but no evidence relating to the fake ID card was found. 

Preci, of Avon Way, Colchester, who has no previous convictions, pleaded guilty to possessing a false identity document before magistrates in November 2021. 

Peter Spary, mitigating, said his client had been in the UK for three years and is in employment. 

Mr Spary said Preci gave an "unusual" account in the interview but believed it was a joke or a prank. 

"He did not understand the seriousness of being in possession of such a document," Mr Spary said. 

Judge David Pugh told Preci: "Fraudulent identification documents can be used for a number of reasons, all of those involve criminality. 

"It is fortunate for you that there is no evidence before this court that the document was used for such purposes." 

Judge Pugh handed Preci a 12-month community order, with 100 hours of unpaid work. 

He was also ordered to pay £340 in court costs.