Thief stole £125 coat to pay for new benefits card

Burnley Magistrates' Court
Burnley Magistrates' Court
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A one-time career crook whose offending is said to be “slowing down” stole a £125 coat from Boundary Mill in Colne – where he was barred from.

Burnley Magistrates’ Court was told how ex-drug addict Axis Robertson (41) was last before the court for shoplifting in 2014. This time he went out stealing not to feed an addiction, but because he had lost his benefits bank card and needed to pay for a new one.

Robertson, of Pine Street, Nelson, admitted theft from the Colne store on September 30th. He was given a community order, with a four week curfew, between 8pm and 6am, every night. The defendant was ordered to pay £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.

District Judge Alan Jones told the court: “I appreciate he’s made efforts to cease getting into trouble but the record hasn’t yet become so old that it can be ignored.”

Prosecutor Mrs Alex Mann told the hearing the defendant was being watched by store staff who knew him because of a previous incident. The coat was recovered from his rucksack.

She continued: “His record is mainly for this sort of offence. He has shoplifting offences going back many a year. More recently, he has managed to stay away. His record is slowing down somewhat.”

Mr John Rusius (defending) said: “Drugs have been a problem in the past. That is not now the case. He took the coat to get some money to get a card.” The solicitor added: “He has significant health problems.”