Banbridge Court has heard how police who responded to a call about suspicious activity near a lorry, found 15 fuel drums lined up, with 11 of them full of diesel.
Appearing in court charged with theft of diesel from the vehicle was Thomas Wilson from Oak Grove Banbridge.
He is further charged with damaging an anti-siphoning device, and possession of Class B drug Cannabis.
His case was adjourned until 18 September for a pre-sentence report.
A PPS prosecutor explained how police received a report of suspicious activity at a lay-by on the Lurgan Road, Banbridge at 1am on 23 January.
As they pulled up a male ran off towards the Lurgan Road. He was followed and jumped a fence into gardens. Officers searched the area but lost sight of him.
They discovered a Vauxhall car nearby which was turned off but the engine still warm. Wilson was later discovered holding the jacket he was earlier spotted wearing. His gloves smelled of diesel and a small amount of cannabis was found.
The court heard that the value of the diesel was £275 and the damage to the lorry was £110. District Judge Mr Copeland was told that Wilson has a previous record including a suspended sentence for drugs offences. The case was adjourned until 18 September.