Thief turns a hand to shoplifting in order to repay his drug debts

PUBLISHED: 14:29 13 July 2006 | UPDATED: 11:53 04 May 2010

FACED with drug debts, shoplifter Daniel Gillett was caught on CCTV as he walked out of Tesco with a 20-inch flat screen TV under his arm. And less than a week later he turned his attention to the Argos store in Ely — he stole a sleeping bag, two televisi

FACED with drug debts, shoplifter Daniel Gillett was caught on CCTV as he walked out of Tesco with a 20-inch flat screen TV under his arm.

And less than a week later he turned his attention to the Argos store in Ely - he stole a sleeping bag, two television leads, a duvet cover and a remote control.

"There were people coming after him for money, so he resorted to offending to meet his drug debts," solicitor Michael Judkins told city magistrates on Thursday.

Twenty-one-year-old Gillett had stopped using heroin when he was recently remanded in custody, and was not planning to buy drugs with money from the stolen goods, he said.

Gillett, formerly of Friars Place in Littleport but now with a bail address in High Barns, Ely, had admitted stealing the £249.99 TV from Tesco in Ely on June 29, and stealing the goods from Argos on July 5.

An off-duty police community support officer had seen Gillett steal the television, said prosecutor Richard Insall, and the matter was reported to the police.

When arrested on July 5, Gillett was carrying a carrier bag of items he had stolen from Argos. He said he could not remember stealing the television, because he was under the influence of drink and drugs.

Sentencing was adjourned until today (Thursday) and he was given conditional bail.

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