A SCARBOROUGH man has been convicted of a “premeditated and professional” shoplifting expedition after going equipped with wire cutters to remove security tags from clothing.
Sebastian Malczewski, 34, had pleaded not guilty before a jury at York Crown Court to one charge each of going equipped for theft and attempted theft.
On the third day of his trial, Malczewski, of Norwood Street, was found guilty of both offences on a majority jury verdict.
He was sentenced to community service by Judge Scott Wolstenholme.
Laura Addy, prosecuting, told how Malczewski went to the Sports Direct store in the town armed with wire cutters, the sound of tags being cut from clothing alerting a member of staff.
The court heard that a month prior Malczewski had been seen by staff pushing security tags under a display unit and a still from the stores CCTV had been pinned up to alert staff to watch out for him.
The Malton Bacon Factory worker claimed that he had put the cutters in his pocket before going shopping with his sister-in-law after using them to prepare his fishing equipment.
He told the jury that he had not left the tool behind in case the youngest of his five children got hold of them.
Following the jury’s verdict, Judge Wolstenholme told Malczewski said that the taking and use of the wire cutters showed that the shoplifting expedition was “premeditated and professional”.
Malczewski was placed under an order for 12 months with a single requirement that he complete 100 hours unpaid work.
He was also ordered to pay £240 towards the costs of his prosecution.