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Shoplifter’s sentence is reduced

A SHOPLIFTER who fled a store with £99 worth of saucepans has had his sentence slashed.

Neil Dexter Sookoo, 26, of Gore Road, Dartford, was sentenced to six months for theft and a further nine months for perverting the course of justice at Maidstone Crown Court last November.

But judges at the Court of Appeal ruled Sookoo's sentence for perverting the course of justice "far too long" and cut it to three months, reducing the total sentence from 15 to nine months.

Sookoo was spotted on CCTV racing out of a department store in Chatham, Kent, with a box of saucepans on July 21 last year and was caught by security guards.

He told police his name was Gavin Campbell and gave an incorrect date of birth, before being released on bail.

Police soon realised he had lied and re-arrested him.

Making the ruling at the Appeal Court last Wednesday (March 20), Mr Justice Brown said: "This was an unsophisticated attempt which was doomed to failure."

Because a significant amount of police time and resources had not been wasted, and no innocent member of the public was hurt, the original sentence was quashed and replaced with a shorter one.

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