A 35-year-old man who stole 31 bottles of vodka in a period of just over three weeks was jailed for a fortnight last Thursday at Banbridge Magistrates Court.
Karol Siemienczuk of Mary Street, Newry, admitted 20 charges of theft from Lidl between July 16 and August 2 this year.
All of the offences involved the theft of bottles of vodka valued at £13.50 each.
A public prosecutor said that the vodka appeared to be for the defendant’s own consumption.
Although two bottles were recovered on the date of the final offence on August 2, the court heard, there was still outstanding compensation of £391.50.
The defendant, a Polish national, was in custody and was brought into the dock of the court along with an interpreter.
His barrister said he had canvassed with him about a pre-sentence report but he wanted to be dealt with at the court.
He had no record in Poland.
He added that the defendant had lost his employment and was suffering from depression, which he self-medicated with alcohol.
The barrister said that his client had been living in the Newry area at the time and was going to relocate with family members.
He said that it was Siemienczuk’s first time in court and submitted, in terms of sentencing, that perhaps something should be left hanging over his head.
Deputy District Judge Brian Archer said he was satisfied the offending merited an immediate custodial sentence, given the number of thefts involved.
For each offence he sentenced the defendant to two weeks in custody.