Prolific offender stole Lion Bar Easter egg and Cornettos from Ipswich Iceland

Thief stole Cornettos and Lion Bar Easter egg

Thief stole Cornettos and Lion Bar Easter egg - Credit: EDP / Archant 2003

A shoplifter with 153 offences to his name has appeared in court after stealing an Easter egg and a pack of four Cornettos.

Philip Wheeldon, of Fore Street, Ipswich, pleaded guilty at South East Suffolk Magistrates’ Court to theft of items valued at £5.50 from Iceland in Ipswich.

The offence occurred on March 9.

Prosecutor Colette Harper said the theft happened at the Sailmakers shopping centre at around 10.15am.

Wheeldon was seen by security staff who recognised him from previous incidents.

He selected a Lion Bar Easter egg and concealed it in his jacket. He then concealed the ice creams.

The theft was broadcast over the Town Link radio system and Wheeldon was stopped by a security guard in Lloyds Avenue.

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He handed over the goods and tried to walk away.

The court was told Wheeldon had previously committed 153 offences, 32 of which were for theft.

Dino Barricella, representing. Wheeldon said: “He has handed the items back and tried to walk away.

“He came out of prison just before Christmas and it is somewhat of a surprise he has stayed out of trouble since Christmas given his record.

“He was hungry. He chanced his arm and therefore he took those items in an unsophisticated manner.”

The court heard Wheeldon had drug issues and leads a chaotic lifestyle.

A probation officer told magistrates Wheeldon was doing his best to engage with those trying to help him.

As Wheeldon had been in custody for 24 hours, magistrates sentenced him to a day in jail and deemed it as time served.

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