Stole to fund heroin habit

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A Buxton man who stole to help fund his £50-a-day heroin habit is to be given help to fight his addiction.

Anthony George Fagan, 27, pleaded guilty to stealing jars of coffee worth £16 from the Co-op store on Scarsdale Place in Buxton on April 13, and a week later a satellite navigation device.

Denney Lau, defending, said since his arrest Fagan had sought voluntary help to address his drug use and was also seeking help from his GP.

Helen Griffiths, prosecuting, said on April 13 the defendant was seen to go into the store, late afternoon, and stop in an aisle containing jars of coffee.

CCTV footage revealed that when he moved away the shelves, that had been full, were missing seven jars of coffee and Fagan had left the store without paying for any items.

He was recognised by a member of staff and was later interviewed by police, when he made a full and frank admission.

“He told police he had stolen the jars of coffee to sell to buy food and drugs as he had a £50-a-day heroin addiction,” said Ms Griffiths.

A week later, while on police bail, he was found by police to be in possession of a carrier bag containing a sat nav which he claimed was his mothers.

Enquiries revealed it was not and when arrested he told police he had found it in a bin at the back of a charity shop but the charity confirmed that no such item had been put in their bin.

Mr Lau said his client was no longer living with his mother following a disagreement and was currently staying with friends: “He is receiving help from agencies and will be moving into his own property very soon.”

Fagan, of West Road, was given a 12-month community order with supervision and a drug rehabilitation requirement when he appeared for sentencing before High Peak magistrates on Monday.

He was also ordered to pay £16 compensation and £100 court costs.