A HOMELESS man who allegedly stole 530 kilograms of copper from various Queensland Rail locations was no stranger to the crime.
Blair Edward Hudson, 28, appeared before Caboolture Magistrates Court on Monday afternoon charged with 90 offences in relation to stolen property throughout the Caboolture District.
His long blonde hair, fair complexion and scruffy flannelette shirt could be likened to grunge icon Kurt Cobain.
Mr Hudson was charged with 26 counts of endangering persons travelling by railway, 29 counts of entering premises with intent, 32 counts of fraud and three counts of interfering with railway property.
Police believed that between March 23, 2012 and July 27, 2012 copper grading rings and copper grading earth straps were stolen from various Queensland Rail sites.
Last week, Caboolture and Sunshine Coast rail commuters faced many disruptions after copper wiring was stolen from train stations.
In court, prosecutor Senior Constable Leisl Stephenson said the removal of copper grading rings could result in electrical build-up which was potentially dangerous.
Ms Stephenson said train lines were stopped four times recently in relation to offences however she believed the hazard went unnoticed more than that.
Ms Stephenson alleged Mr Hudson mainly committed his crimes at night, waiting until the last train on the Caboolture line left the station before he got to work on the tracks.
"He almost always sold it the morning after he stole it," she alleged.
Defence lawyer Blair Hoolihan said Mr Hudson was a Diesel Fitter who earned roughly $450 a week.
"He was aware police were likely to catch him," Mr Hoolihan said.
Magistrate Paul Johnstone questioned a previous conviction which he believed was relevant to the current charges.
Mr Hudson appeared in Caboolture Magistrates Court on September 30, 2011 charged with stealing and trespassing in similar circumstances.
That time, Mr Hudson escaped with a fine.
Magistrate Johnstone said that it was clear Mr Hudson's crimes had increased in intensity since he was caught the first time and deemed him an unacceptable risk to society.
Magistrate Johnstone denied Mr Hudson's request for bail and ordered him to be remanded in custody.
Mr Hudson is scheduled to appear in Caboolture Magistrates Court via video link on September 13.
Caboolture Scrap Metal Recyclers office manager, Michael said a kilo of copper was worth between five and six dollars a kilo whereas other metals such as steel and brass did not fetch nearly as much.
While copper theft was not uncommon, Michael said he believed the poor economic climate may have been a reason for the recent spikes.
Steel - 10c/kg
Stainless steel - $1/kg
Brass - $3.40/kg
Copper - $5-$6/kg