Tony’s happy his car is back

CAR theft victim Tony Saunders says he’s one of the lucky ones after his vehicle was found with only minor damage.

About 9.30pm on Monday night, his 1998 model white Hyundai Excel was broken into at the yard of Wodonga’s Elgas depot.

It was then driven through a locked gate.

Police recovered the car in Albury on Tuesday afternoon.

James Lawrence Strauss, 18, of Springdale Heights, has been charged with the theft of the vehicle.

Mr Saunders, of Baranduda, said he was relieved the vehicle used to ferry his five children, aged four to 15, had been found.

“I thought they would find it, but it would be burnt,” Mr Saunders said.

“Every day when you pick up the paper you see burnt-out cars — I’m one of the lucky ones.”

The Elgas truck driver said the missing vehicle had been a “headache” for the hard-working family.

“We need two cars — it’s a real inconvenience,” he said.

“I use the car every day to pick up the kids from child care.”

Mr Saunders said he had fortunately removed his child seats, worth $500, from the car but he would still have to pay for the damage to the vehicle because he only had third party insurance.

He said Elgas would have to replace a set of keys left in the vehicle and the cost of repairs to the fence.

Tools that don’t belong to Mr Saunders were found in the back seat of his vehicle.

The tools are now being held by Wodonga police.

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