Drunk thief to ‘dry out’ in jail after being caught wearing stolen clothing
- Credit: Suffolk police
A prolific shoplifter’s 148th offence was exposed by a price tag hanging from his clothing.
Richard ‘Ricky’ Florian protested his innocence while wearing an item of clothing he had just stolen from H&M in Bury St Edmunds.
It was the second theft in a spate of recent offences committed in the town by Florian, 42, of Linnet Road – beginning the day after he avoided jail by receiving a four-week suspended sentence.
Florian admitted all the latest charges at magistrates’ court in Ipswich on Friday.
On January 16, he walked out of Wilko with a set of £40 hair trimmers, before walking straight to Trinity Methodist Church and stealing a laptop from behind the backs of drop-in session organisers, who were later reunited with the computer.
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The next day, he walked into JD Sports with another man and stole a £55 Adidas hoodie – an hour before the pair entered H&M, leaving with two stolen items.
Prosecutor Colette Harper said: “When challenged by a member of staff, the defendant said he wasn’t doing anything, but a tag was hanging from an item of his clothing, which he took off and threw to the ground.”
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On Christmas Eve, Florian pocketed a set of keys left momentarily unattended by a member of staff at McDonald’s.
The theft was later seen on CCTV – followed by Florian’s return when the restaurant was closed on Christmas Day.
The prosecution continued: “He unlocked the door, walked in, waved to someone outside and left, locking the door behind him.
“Later, he did the same thing and unsuccessfully attempted to remove a charity box.”
Florian was in breach of a suspended sentence from December 15 for criminal damage and theft, and a conditional discharge from September 19 for stealing £6 of sandwiches and wine from Tesco. He was also subject to conditions of early release from prison on licence.
Jeremy Kendall, representing Florian, said prison would provide the respite his client needed from an ongoing problem with alcohol, which he had consumed before the offences on January 16 and 17.
“He’ll longer encroach on the good will of the court,” he said.
“He made a shipwreck of his suspended term of imprisonment.
“Six to eight weeks would give him the chance to dry out.”
Florian was jailed for 12 weeks and must pay £245 compensation for the unrecovered stolen goods.