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On-the-run thief captured after Tesco shoplift

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: May 22, 2014

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A PROLIFIC shoplifter who has twice evaded appearances before magistrates was captured trying to steal Jack Daniels from a Burton supermarket.

Martin Brown was spotted by security guards as he tried to leave Tesco, on St Peter’s Bridge, without paying, Burton Magistrates’ Court has been told.

But it was only after he was arrested that police discovered he was also wanted in other parts of the Midlands after failing to show up to face previous charges.

Emma Thompson, prosecuting, said: “He told police he was having a bad month, and his head was all over the shop.

“He was on the run and his dad had died.”

Brown, who has 78 previous convictions, admitted stealing the two bottles, valued at £52, on May 20, when he appeared before magistrates on Wednesday.

“He said he had no intention of going in and paying for anything. He took the bottles off the shelf as they didn’t have tags on, and left without making payment,” Mrs Thompson told the court.

Neil O’Driscoll, defending, said there were a number of issues relating to this ‘unusual case’.

“It was straightforward and there was no degree of sophistication.

“Normally you would impose a financial penalty. However, as we have discovered, this client is no stranger to the court,” he added.

Brown, had been due to appear before benches in Leicester and Derby for shoplifting offences and possession of an offensive weapon, but failed to arrive.

On one occasion, he had been due to go on a pre-booked family holiday, and did not want to miss the trip, magistrates heard.

Both courts issued warrants for his arrest.

Magistrates did not sentence Brown, of Shopton Road, Birmingham, for his theft, instead transferring him to Derby to face all charges together.

He was remanded in custody and due to appear at Derby Magistrates’ Court today.

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