Cocaine addict shoplifter jailed
4:51pm Tuesday 5th November 2013 in News
A 'PROFESSIONAL' shoplifter who stole more than £4000 worth of goods to fund his cocaine habit has been jailed for nine months.
Neil Malcolm Smith of Pendine Close, Barry targeted a Boots store in Ammanford, Carmarthenshire on three separate occasions and stole vast quantities of face creams.
At Llanelli Magistrates' court Smith, 46, pleaded guilty to stealing £1,066.37 worth of the products on June 27, £1,991.58 worth on September 4 and £1,145.69 on September 13.
The defendant, who was said to have committed more than 80 previous offences including 40 of theft, was said to be serving a 12-week jail term for similar offences in Gwent. He appeared before court via a video link.
Prosecutor Sian Vaughan said Smith had not been known to Boots staff and had been identified by his clothing after being captured on CCTV. When arrested, he subsequently made a full admission.
District Judge David Parsons said: “He must be a very skilled thief, apart from the fact he gets caught occasionally, because he manages to leave these stores with so many items.”
Defence solicitor Michael Woods said: “He was sweeping these goods into a bag before running out of the store, it was a fairly unsophisticated case of theft."
He added that the defendant, who was addicted to cocaine, had taken advantage of the store's poor security.
District Judge David Parsons told Smith: “You selected a store with a poor system of security and stole more than £4,000 worth of items.
“By any yardstick this was professional shoplifting, stealing valuable items which are easily re-saleable.”
He gave Smith three prison terms of three months on each of the charges to run consecutively.