Nottinghamshire car park thief caught within minutes
A thief who stole a purse containing €20 and 30p from a Worksop car park was spotted by a shop worker and caught within minutes, a court heard.
Neculai Todirenchi took the purse from an unlocked car while its owner returned her trolley at the Aldi car park, on Gateford Road, at 1pm, on May 14.
Prosecutor Stacey Mills described how an Aldi worker on a break spotted him walking around the loading bays and raised the alarm.
An area search was conducted and Todirenchi was found nearby, with a number of bank cards and a driving license in the victim's name, along with €20 and 30p.
The victim said a £1,000 ring may have been in the purse, but later conceded that she wasn't sure.
The court heard he has five convictions for ten offences, including five thefts between 2011 and 2015, but has been out of trouble since.
Vicky Clarson, mitigating, said Todirenchi has been sentenced to prison in the past, but wasn't subject to a court order at the time.
"He very much regrets his involvement and would submit it was an opportunist offence, not sophisticated,” she said.
"He can't explain why he did this, save to say for about three months he wasn't working. He wasn’t seeking any benefit and neither was his wife. He describes needing money for food and general living expenses.
"He is now working for a local car wash and earns £350 to £400 per week."
She said he is from Romania and has been in the UK for ten years.
Todirenchi, 43, of Bath Street, Mansfield, was fined £233, with £85 costs and a £34 surcharge.