A MAN, who stole a rare oil engine worth £7,000, sold it as scrap for just £170, Lincoln Crown Court was told.
Andrew Poulson, of Dudley Road, Grantham, took the 1950s Ruston engine and a trailer from a farm near to Sibsey Trader Mill, where it was being stored.
Sam Skinner, prosecuting, said Poulson stole the engine out of revenge against the farmer.
Poulson, 45, then cut it into pieces and sold it to a scrap dealer in Grantham. The dealer was suspicious and alerted police.
Mr Skinner said the trustees of the mill spent 10 years raising money to buy the engine, which was not insured. Poulson admitted stealing the engine on December 6, 2011. He was given a 12 month community order with 200 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay £500 compensation to the trustees.
Judge Peter Clark told him: “This was a very mean offence.”
James MacDonald, defending, said Poulson had fallen out with the farmer over a business deal which had not worked out how he had expected.
He added: “He considered this to be a worthless piece of metal and decided to sell it for scrap.”