Spectacle thief was caught red-handed

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A thief has admitted stealing hundreds of pounds worth of glasses from a Wigan optician to feed his drug habit.

Anthony Chambers pleaded guilty to the theft at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court, where justices heard that the 55-year-old had travelled to the town from Liverpool with the intention of committing the crime.

He entered the Vision Express store on Standishgate and stole spectacles and frames worth a total of £889.

Prosecuting, Tess Kenyon said: “Mr Chambers was seen in Vision Express on May 28.

“After he had left the store there were gaps in the stock. He was followed on foot and police were contacted.

“He was seen by the staff member to take glasses frames and put them into a carrier bag.”

Chambers, of Wellstead Road, Liverpool, was arrested and then taken to Wigan police station where he underwent questioning.

He admitted his crime and told officers that he intended to sell the objects on for money.

Ms Kenyon added: “He had travelled to Wigan from Liverpool specifically to shoplift.

“He had no money and was taking cocaine. He intended to go back to Liverpool to sell the items.”

Ms Kenyon told the court that the glasses and frames were all recovered.

Gary Golding, defending, said: “He admitted it and his reasons for doing so. If he gets help with his addiction you won’t see him before the courts again.”

The presiding magistrate adjourned the hearing until sentencing on June 23.