Shoplifter is given jail term warning


A ‘prolific shoplifter’ was told last Thursday that he was going to get longer and longer prison sentences if he did not stop stealing.

Vytautas Verseckas (56) of Mill Street, Gilford, admitted the theft of goods valued at £65.57 from Tesco and going equipped for theft on November 26.

For each offence he was sentenced to four months in prison.

The court heard police went to Tesco in Banbridge after the report of a theft and staff had detained two males. They had a black lap top bag which was foiled lined.

When interviewed the defendant said he had come to Banbridge on bus to see a man about a job and they drank two cans of beer together.

He claimed that the other man told him to put a bottle of wine in the bag and leave the store.

CCTV also showed two bottles of cognac worth £55.57 being stolen.

A barrister representing Verseckas said his client had other matters before Dungannon court. His bail had been revoked and he was in custody.

He explained that the defendant did have a job but he contracted a condition which left him unfit for work and he turned to crime to sustain him. He had an alcohol problem.

Deputy District Judge, Mr Paul Conway, told Verseckas he was “a prolific thief” and the excuses he made in the pre-sentence report showed him “a prolific liar”.

The judge said he was certain this bag was not given to him by a random person because it was similar to those he had used in previous offending.

He added that custody was inevitable.

“If you do not stop stealing not only will the periods of imprisonment become longer you will be appearing in the Crown Court where the length of imprisonment is in years rather than months,” the judge told the defendant.