Champagne thief is jailed

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A PROLIFIC thief was jailed after being caught by an off-duty police officer stealing champagne from a store in Chapel.

He had been alerted by a member of the public in the Co-operative store on July 15, High Peak magistrates heard on Monday.

PC Darren Mabbott ran outside and saw Anthony Anderson getting into a taxi, said prosecutor Helen Griffiths.

“Stolen champagne and foodstuffs were in the footwell of the taxi and the defendant was in the back,” she said.

“The police officer tried to get Mr Anderson out of the vehicle but he resisted and tried to pull the officer in with him,” said Ms Griffiths. Anderson was restrained until other officers arrived.

Anderson, 47, admitted stealing eight bottles of champagne, meat and sandwiches worth £257.17. He asked for the theft of four bottles of spirits on the same day from a store in Poynton to be taken in to consideration.

Magistrate Ian Hurst, sentencing Anderson to eight weeks in custody, said: “You have committed over 128 offences throughout your criminal life.

“You are a seriously persistent offender and take no regard of court orders. This matter is so serious only custody is appropriate.”

Anderson had told police he had been out drinking and travelled to Poynton before going to Chapel to meet up with a friend.

He had intended to drink some of the champagne and sell the rest to pay the taxi driver.

Neville Warburton, defending, said Anderson had problems with alcohol: “He had consumed a considerable amount of vodka to say the least. The level of abuse is getting to the stage of being life-threatening.”

No order for costs was made against Anderson, of Cuddington Crescent, Stockport.