A WREXHAM shoplifter has been spared jail after admitting he stole goods from Co-op stores.

Joshua Parker, who told the court he was of Y Wern, appeared at Wrexham Magistrates Court on Tuesday afternoon.

The 36-year-old, with the assistance of a sign language interpreter, admitted to three theft from shop offences.

Prosecutor Justin Espie told the court that the first and second took place on July 13 and 14 at the Co-op in Regent Street, Llangollen.

He took meat and fish on both occasions - worth £23.40 on the first date and £51.75 on the second.

Denbighshire Free Press:

The final offence took place on August 18 at the Co-op in Lord Street, Wrexham, when he took drinks worth £9.60.

Mr Espie told the court the offences put Parker in breach of multiple suspended sentences which had also been imposed for shoplifting offences.

Lorraine McClure, defending, said the court faced a "predicament" - given her client had a criminal record spanning some years which had seen him going in and out of prison.

She said: "He started taking drugs at 17, with heroin being the most prolific.

"And he explains that in prison, he is also able to obtain drugs; so in fact his ability to reform in the prison is perhaps less than it is in the community.

"He accepts there have been occasions when he hasn't accepted help from probation, but he's 36 now and he says it needs to change.

"He's starting to realise that this revolving door can't continue."

Parker was told that the court was just about persuaded not to activate his breached suspended sentences, with a total fine of £100 handed down to mark the breaches.

Each of the new thefts received a two week custodial sentence - consecutive to each other and to his ongoing suspended sentences - but the sentences were suspended for two years.

Parker must pay compensation to the Co-op in the value of the items taken, as well as £85 costs.

He was warned that if his offending continues, there will come a time when the court will activate the sentences.