A shoplifter who was among seven thieves blamed for causing a huge rise in crime in Swadlincote town centre after they were all released from prison around the same time is back behind bars again – for stealing from shops.

Leon Tilt has been jailed again for stealing meat from a supermarket in the town.

It marks the second time that Tilt has been jailed since his case was featured in the Burton Mail last summer.

He was among the seven prolific shoplifters whose actions had even forced police to change their shifts in order to catch the perpetrators.

Leon Tilt

Leon Tilt has been jailed again

Tilt, 32, of Midland Road, Swadlincote, is now also back behind bars after admitting stealing joints of meat worth £40 from Lidl, Swadlincote, on February 13. He also breached a suspended sentence.

He has now been jailed for 36 weeks because of his previous offences and was also ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge.

In October, last year, he was jailed for eight weeks after driving while banned - on the day he was released from his previous prison sentence.

Leon Tilt stole from Lidl

Tilt had previously jailed for 32 weeks last summer after admitting stealing two bottles of vodka from Aldi, Swadlincote, on May 10; driving a silver Mercedes in Midland Road, Swadlincote, otherwise than in accordance with a licence and without insurance on May 12.

He also admitted stealing a quantity of cheese worth £15 from Sainsbury’s, Newhall, on June 15 and breaching a suspended sentence order.

His sentencing comes as another of the seven shoplifters was in court again.

Jordan Burgess

Burgess, 38, of Midland Road, Swadlincote, has now been jailed for another six weeks for stealing salmon on January 6. Two days after he committed this crime he appeared in court where he was convicted of stealing a knife and a range of aerosols in December.

He has this time admitted stealing a quantity of salmon worth £57.50 from Sainsbury's, in Swadlincote, on January 6. He has now been jailed for a further six weeks because magistrates sitting at Southern Derbyshire felt he had an 'appalling record'.

They also said they had no confidence that he would comply with community orders imposed by the court. He was also ordered to pay £57.50 compensation.

Burgess had already been jailed for 17 weeks when he appeared in court on January 8 for stealing a Stanley knife from Massey’s, in Woodville, on October 22, and stealing aerosols, deodorant, and air fresheners from Tesco Express, in Swadlincote, on December 20.

Burgess had also admitted breaching the suspended sentence he was given in October, last year, imposed for stealing cheese and two bottles of washing powder from the town centre.

Sainsbury's logo
Jordan Burgess has been stealing from Sainsbury's

He had also been jailed in July, last year, for nine weeks after stealing six cans of Lynx body spray from Asda, in Woodville, coffee and alcohol from Tesco Express, Church Gresley, both on June 14. He also admitted breaching a suspended sentence.

Last year Derbyshire police had told how officers had to change their shift patterns in order to arrest Burgess, Tilt, Daniel Singleton, Christopher Knight, Rebecca Portsmouth, Matthew Kendall and Michael Kavanagh.

They all embarked on a massive shoplifting sprees across the town, all within weeks of their prison release dates, causing a 56 per cent rise in crime in the town.

When those jailed were released from prison, Sergeant Graham Summers had pleaded with town centre shops to reconsider their layouts, urging them not to display expensive items in doorways, which were easy picking for shoplifters, he said.

But he said his pleas to shops, which he did not named individually, had fallen on deaf ears. He was told the layouts were decided by the shops' national policies.