Woman ‘used as a mule’

Blackpool Magistrates' Court
Blackpool Magistrates' Court
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A woman was used as a mule to carry tools to be used in theft by her boyfriend who was a drug user, a court was told.

Elizabeth Hayes was so hard up because her
 partner spent so much money on drugs that she stole food to eat.

Hayes, a 38-year-old mother, of Clevedon Road, North Shore, admitted being in possession of two screwdrivers and a pair of pliers for use in theft and stealing food.

She was bailed for pre-sentence reports by District Judge John Maxwell sitting at Blackpool Magistrates’ Court, who said: “She was used as a mule.”

Adrian Hollamby, 
prosecuting, said Hayes stole a sponge cake and a chicken valued together at £13 from The Co-op on May 3.

She was searched and 
police found a bag on her containing tools.

Patrick Nelligan, defending, said: “She and her partner became heroin addicts and, at one time, she was a prolific shoplifter to fund that habit. She says she is drug-free now and has been for some time, but her 
partner is still a regular drug user.

“The drugs account for a large part of the family budget. She was short of money and took the food intending to eat it herself. She was carrying the bag containing the tools for her partner.”