‘Desperate’ man stole goods

Blackpool Magistrates' Court
Blackpool Magistrates' Court
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A builder said to owe hundreds of thousands of pounds stole because he was financially desperate.

Christopher Devlin was spotted stealing two rechargeable batteries valued together at £150 from a DIY store in Blackpool.

Devlin, a 48-year-old 
father, of Quakerfields, Westhoughton, Bolton, pleaded guilty to an offence of theft.

He was given a two-year conditional discharge and ordered to pay £40 costs plus £15 victims’ surcharge by Blackpool magistrates.

Martine Connah, prosecuting, said a store detective spotted Devlin acting suspiciously in the resort’s B&Q store on April 9 at 1.40pm.

Devlin removed the security tags on two rechargeable batteries and concealed them in his jacket, before leaving the store without paying for them.

Brett Chappell, defending, told magistrates: “He owes hundreds of thousands of pounds. He is struggling with mental health problems born out of financial pressure and has been signed off sick.”

Devlin had argued with his partner and decided to come to Blackpool for a few days break. He ran short of money and out of desperation stole the batteries, intending to resell them to pay for his living costs.