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Innisfil man pleads guilty to series of break-ins and thefts from local businesses

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Terrence Zerafa walked into the Barrie courthouse Thursday morning with his mother by his side, prepared to plead guilty for a series of break-and-enters and thefts in 2022.

South Simcoe police said Zerafa and several others were part of a crime spree ring targeting local properties, including a Barrie restaurant and bar, a Petro Canada in Mono and equipment and masonry businesses.

According to police, the crimes date back to July 2022 and include 33 break-ins throughout Bradford, Innisfil, Barrie, York Region and Toronto.

Police officers executed five search warrants and allegedly seized eight vehicles, a skid steer, dumpster, forklift, chainsaws and more than $100,000 of conductor wire.

"A lot of this equipment is stolen for scrap metal value catalytic converters, diesel-particulate filters, scrap wire, scrap steel; all have a great, significant value, and it's very easy to get rid of for thieves," said Staff Sgt. Dave Phillips in a Nov. 4, 2022 interview with CTV News.

Zerafa, from Innisfil, pleaded guilty to stealing power tools, breaking into businesses, and being in possession of a stolen 2006 Ford E-350 cargo van.

After arriving five minutes late for court, Zerafa and his lawyer waited four-and-a-half hours to enter the guilty plea before a Barrie judge.

He also pleaded guilty to breaching his conditions of release by associating with his co-accused.

The defence ordered a pre-sentence report to assist the court in handing Zerafa an appropriate sentence by considering his history.

He is due back in court in mid-April.

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