Meat thief targeted Burnley supermarket

Burnley Magistrates' Court
Burnley Magistrates' Court
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A shoplifter with more than 80 offences on his record helped himself to meat worth £87.52, a court heard.

Alan Clark hid the haul in his jacket and walked out of Sainsbury's in Burnley, the town's magistrates were told.

The 60-year-old, who suffers from depression, had been stopped by security staff at the store over previous weeks, but they had let him go as they had felt sorry for him due to his presentation.

Clark said he had fully intended to take the 16 items when he was questioned. He had 84 previous offences on his record, but had not been in court since 2012.

Mr Jeremy Frain, defending Clark, said he cooperated when stopped and made full and frank admissions to the police. When he was interviewed, he said he took the meat to sell to obtain other food.

The solicitor added: "He realises that what he has done is wrong." The defendant, who had injections for depression, was on income support.

Clark, of Holcombe Drive, Burnley, admitted theft on July 24th. He was given a 12-month conditional discharge and was told to pay a £20 victim surcharge.

The defendant asked the Bench if the discharge meant he had to keep out of trouble for 12 months. The chairwoman replied: "Keep out of trouble forever really, but at least 12 months."