Bainsford shoplifter complimented for choice of champagne

The court had imposed a 'no contact' order on Sime
The court had imposed a 'no contact' order on Sime

A shoplifter was complimented by a sheriff yesterday (Wednesday) on his choice of champagne.

Michael Bennet (39) stole two bottles of Moet & Chandon Brut Imperial from a McColls branch in Falkirk.

Appearing at Falkirk Sheriff Court for sentencing, his solicitor, Simon Hutchison, told Sheriff Derek Reekie, “Good taste, my lord.”

The summary sheriff replied: “You took the words out of my mouth.”

Bennet, of Carronside Street, Bainsford, admitted taking the classic aperitif from McColls in Maggieswood Loan, Falkirk on July 24 last year.

Prosecutor Graham McLachlan said: “The bottles were not recovered.”

Mr Hutchison said Bennet had been drinking, and had “little recollection” of taking the Moet.

Asking the sheriff to give Bennet a chance, he said he used to be a regular offender, but now had a job as a warehouseman and there had been “a significant slowing down” in his criminal activity in recent years.

His last conviction was in 2014.

Fining Bennet £270, Sheriff Reekie said Bennet had previous convictions for similar offences, but they “went back quite a long way”.

He told him: “The concern is that for whatever reason, that may not be entirely obvious, this is a return to previous habits.

“It’s also a concern that you had no recollection of what you were doing.”