A THIEF admitted stealing goods from shops in the city centre.

John Austin raided Ted Baker clothes shop in Dukes Lane, Brighton, before the lockdown.

He took handbags worth more than £300 after scouting the shop ten days earlier.

During the same period the 40-year-old thief also stole candles, shower gels and aromatherapy products from Pecksniffs in Meeting House Lane in The Lanes.

Austin, of Oriental Place, Brighton, appeared before Brighton Magistrates’ Court where he admitted five charges including theft and entering a premises with intent to steal.

District Judge Amanda Kelly imposed an 18-week suspended sentence and noted Austin’s previous criminal record for shoplifting. He was put under a restraining order not to enter the area for two years.