Thief filled suitcase with chocolate

Burnley Magistrates Court.

Burnley Magistrates Court.

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A thief with almost 200 offences behind him filled a suitcase with chocolate and pulled it out of Aldi without paying, a court heard.

Burnley magistrates were told how Christopher Woodrup (49) had helped himself to 75 bars of Cookie Crumble, worth £74.75. He was confronted by staff after walking past the checkouts.

Woodrup was not bailed for the August 11 offence and on October 3, he walked into Sainsbury’s in the town, stole three bottles of vodka worth £120 and left with them stuffed down the front of his trousers.

The defendant, who has had a long-term battle with drug addiction, has 184 offences on his record, 94 of them for theft.

Woodrup, of Branch Road, Burnley, admitted two counts of theft. The defendant, who had appeared in custody, was bailed to the court building for a pre- sentence, but, said his solicitor “appeared to have run off.”

The bench, who said Woodrup had a “terrible record,” issued a warrant not backed for bail.

The court was told that when Woodrup was questioned after the Aldi offence, he fully admitted it and said he was going to sell the haul if he had got away with it.

When he struck in Sainsbury’s he had to be restrained and there was a short struggle outside the store.

Mrs Tracy Yates (prosecuting) said: “In interview, he said he went for a walk round and decided to steal the vodka. He said he put the bottles down the front of his trousers and he stole it to drink, not to sell.”

Nick Cassidy (defending) said: “He is a defendant who has had a long battle with drug addiction and most recently this defendant appeared before the courts in May and June in relation to shoplifting offences.”

Mr Cassidy said there had been a marked gap in Woodrup’s offending which coincided with the death of his long-term partner.

The solicitor added: “He was trying to engage with Inspire ( the treatment service ) but drugs were still an issue. He is in touch with Inspire and is making efforts.”