Romanian travelled to St Helens Tesco Extra for video game theft spree

First published in News

A ROMANIAN, who travelled to St Helens specifically to go on a shoplifting spree, appeared before magistrates days before returning to Bucharest.

Standing in the dock at St Helens Magistrates' Court, Stefan Catalin pleaded guilty to stealing almost £600 worth of computer games from Tesco Extra on the linkway on Wednesday, January 23.

The 22-year-old was on a week-long trip to the UK, visiting relatives in Birmingham, where he met a man who suggested travelling to St Helens to steal.

Armed with a foil-lined laptop case, he entered the store along with another man.

A member of the public alerted security telling them that he had taken the items, but Catalin was already under surveillance.

He left the store and was heading across the car park before police were called.

The two men were stopped on Milverny Way and Catalin admitted stealing the games.

Prosecutor Angela Blackmore explained that under police interview, he made no comment about the other man. She said he didn’t know his name.

Mrs Blackmore added: “He indicated that back in Birmingham, he would be paid £10 per game. This was the first time he had done anything like this and he was sorry. He had no previous convictions in this country.”

Rob Haygarth, defending, said: “He lives with his father and grandparents in Bucharest and travelled to England on January 18 to stay with his uncle.

“He was working in Romania until just after New Year and got a chance to spend a week with his family. He was scheduled to return on January 26.”

Magistrates fined him £120 in total, but because he had spent the previous night in custody, it would not have to be paid.

Comments (6)

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7:54am Fri 8 Feb 13

smith&weston says...

Who'd like to be the first to comment ....' we must not tarnish all immigrants with the same brush just because of the actions of a few...." yawn. Get me a brush, I'll tarnish until the conditions of entering the UK are beefed up to the level of other countries who take the mass influx of career criminals seriously.
Who'd like to be the first to comment ....' we must not tarnish all immigrants with the same brush just because of the actions of a few...." yawn. Get me a brush, I'll tarnish until the conditions of entering the UK are beefed up to the level of other countries who take the mass influx of career criminals seriously. smith&weston
  • Score: 0

7:12pm Fri 8 Feb 13

Johnboi says...

Would have been a lot simpler to take him behind Tesco and chop his hands off. Then stick him on the train back to wherever.
Would have been a lot simpler to take him behind Tesco and chop his hands off. Then stick him on the train back to wherever. Johnboi
  • Score: 0

9:38pm Fri 8 Feb 13

quizling says...

whats that all about? he spent a night in custody so does not have to pay the £120 fine? well that will show foreign criminals that british courts are tough. i despair at the justice system we have
whats that all about? he spent a night in custody so does not have to pay the £120 fine? well that will show foreign criminals that british courts are tough. i despair at the justice system we have quizling
  • Score: 0

11:57am Sat 9 Feb 13

Thurman says...

£120 to spend the night in a police station,would of been cheaper to put him in a travel lodge
£120 to spend the night in a police station,would of been cheaper to put him in a travel lodge Thurman
  • Score: 0

1:00pm Thu 14 Feb 13

pitbullboxing says...

Thanks New Labour.
Thanks New Labour. pitbullboxing
  • Score: 0

1:32pm Thu 14 Feb 13

Erics_protege says...

Why was he specifically sent to St Helens to steal? Strange choice given the state of the town centre at the moment.

Surely his fine should have been increased because he got a roof over his head for the night, what was the justification / logic for removing it?

Hopefully he was driven straight to the airport and stuck on the next plane (at his cost). However, I suspect he is still here and living off the state somewhere.
Why was he specifically sent to St Helens to steal? Strange choice given the state of the town centre at the moment. Surely his fine should have been increased because he got a roof over his head for the night, what was the justification / logic for removing it? Hopefully he was driven straight to the airport and stuck on the next plane (at his cost). However, I suspect he is still here and living off the state somewhere. Erics_protege
  • Score: 0

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