A THIEF stole laundry items from a convenience store in order to pay for gas and electricity, a court has heard.

Jamier Lee Vines walked into a Co-Op store on Beechcroft Road and hide the items with his jacket before walking out without paying, Swindon Magistrates’ Court was told on Wednesday (June 23).

Vines, of The Circle, took the products, valued at £35, on November 10, 2021, but wasn’t interviewed by police until April this year, prosecutor Pauline Lambert said.

But he told officers that he stole the items in order to get money to pay for electricity and gas, Ms Lambert said.

In the hearing, during which Vines pleaded guilty to theft from a shop, Ms Lambert requested £35 in compensation for the Co-Op.

Defending, Emma Hillier said that there was a large gap in his offending because he had given up Class A drugs.

“This appears to be a one-off lapse, he can’t explain to me why he did it.

“He has no intention to carry on, he doesn’t want to continue appearing in court like he used to.”

District Judge Joanna Dickens decided to conditionally discharge the 36-year-old for six months.

This means that if Vines does not re-offend in that time, he will face no further penalty. If he does, he is liable to be re-sentenced for this offence as well.

The District Judge also imposed a £22 victim surcharge, which was deemed paid by the time he had spent in custody since being arrested.

There was no order for compensation.

Meanwhile, outstanding fines of £1,499.20 imposed in 2013 was remitted.