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Prolific Peterhead thief stole charity tin – then went back and took another

The charity tins were stolen from Peterhead Motors Garage.
The charity tins were stolen from Peterhead Motors Garage.

A prolific shoplifter has been imprisoned after he stole a charity tin from a petrol station – then returned hours later and swiped a second tin.

Kieran McLean, 27, was spotted by a worker at Peterhead Motors as he sneaked back in and cut the string that attached a tin to the counter.

Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard how over several days in September last year McLean also attempted to break into a confectionery shop in the town and then nicked food from an Iceland store.

He pleaded guilty to two charges of theft and one charge of attempting to break into a sweet shop.

Thief stole tin as soon as shop workers back was turned

Fiscal depute Brian Young said the owner of Bon Bon sweet shop in Peterhead arrived at work to see the glass panel of the shop’s front door was cracked and had damage to the doorframe and lock.

On viewing the store’s CCTV, the owner saw McLean in the shop prior to its closing and loitering around the till.

Police then viewed town centre CCTV, where they saw the 27-year-old make repeated attempts to force his way inside at around 1am.

He eventually gave up but caused around £300 damage to the door.

Later that same day, Mr Young described how McLean entered the convenience store at Peterhead Motors garage and attempted to purchase e-cigarette liquid.

He said: “While the shop assistant had her back turned, the accused picked up a charity tin from the counter and placed it under his top and left the store.”

Returning to the same store hours later, Mr Young said McLean “crouched down and moved along the till front”.

He added: “The accused attempted to remove a further charity tin which was attached to the counter by a string.

“The shop assistance noticed the accused and confronted him and at which point he cut the string with a folding pocket knife and ran out of the shop with the second charity tin.”

Police soon attended at McLean’s address and found coins strewn around the kitchen floor.

They found £5.69 in change and a bladed multi-tool believed to be used in the theft.

Days later, McLean was again captured on CCTV stealing £55 worth of steaks from an Iceland store.

Sheriff says accused has ‘pages of previous convictions’

Defence agent Stuart Flowerdew told the court that McLean had spent years in foster care due to alcohol issues at home.

He added: “Thereafter he began a prolific career in shoplifting.”

Sheriff William Summers told McLean that he had “pages of previous convictions” for similar offences.

He added: “There is no alternative left to this court other than the imposition of a custodial sentence.”

Sheriff Summers sentenced McLean, whose address was given as HMP Grampian, to a 14-month prison sentence backdated to September 27 last year.

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