Ex-drug addict shoplifter needed cash for new home

The defendant targeted Sainsbury's and Poundstretchers in Colne.
The defendant targeted Sainsbury's and Poundstretchers in Colne.
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A "desperate" shoplifter stole beef and coffee after he got his first home for a while and needed cash for furniture and bills, a court heard.

Ex-drug addict Russell Stansfield had been out of trouble for three years when he pinched three joints of meat worth £30 from Sainsbury's and five jars of coffee to the value of £19.95 from Poundstretchers.

Stansfield, who struck at the stores in Colne, owned up and expressed remorse when he was caught.

The 42-year-old defendant, of Norway House on Spring Place in Colne, admitted two counts of theft on September 26th and October 7th. He was given a 12-month conditional discharge and was told to pay compensation and £30 costs.

Mr Nick Dearing, defending, said Stansfield had had some issue with drugs over the years but was stable on methadone and that while the defendant had been homeless for years, he had got a Housing Association flat and for the first time in a long time had to find money for furniture and bills.

"He is subsisting on job seekers' allowance of £60 and found he had run through his money too quickly," the solicitor added. "He resorted to these two matters of theft to raise some money in the interim. He sadly resorted to rather desperate measures."