A SERIAL thief who stole two Poppy Appeal charity boxes was given his second suspended sentence in a week.
Keith John Ashworth, 30, of Cliveden Road, Chester admitted taking the money from Netto, River Lane, Saltney, on October 30 and November 1 last year. He claimed the boxes contained a total of £17.
Ashworth’s appearance in Chester Crown Court on Tuesday was his 29th court date for a total of 79 offences, most of them thefts.
Peter Frost, defending, said: “Mr Ashworth was shopping on October 30 and took the opportunity to take the first box then went back two days later accompanied with his girlfriend when he took the second box.
“When he was arrested a short time later he admitted the offences.
“He is determined to break his habit and he apologises for the commission of this mean offence.”
On March 11, Ashworth was sentenced by Chester magistrates for offences including theft from a shop, possession of drugs and assault.
He received a 20-week custodial sentence, suspended for two years as well as being ordered to attend drug rehabilitation for nine months, put on a curfew from 8pm-8am and told to pay compensation.
Passing Ashworth’s second sentencing in a week, Judge Clarke gave him a six-month jail term, suspended for two years and an 18- month supervision order. Judge Clark told Ashworth: “It’s the pathetic level you get to that people with drugs commit offences with such a small return.”