Shoplifting grandmother is caught stealing from Boots

Director of Public Prosecutions Alison Saunders

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SHOPLIFTING grandmother Margaret Manuel has been given a six -month conditional discharge after taking cosmetics and a magazine from Boots.

The 61-year-old appeared at Fareham Magistrates’ Court charged with the thefts, which totalled £50 and took place in Fareham town centre on Wednesday, July 9.

Manuel, who represented herself in court, said: ‘I am deeply embarrassed and very very sorry. I am gutted. I have no recollection of the mater.’

She said that as she suffers from depression and a dissociative identity disorder, she takes medication, which caused her to block out the incident.

Manuel, of Garnier Park, Wickham, said at the time around the shoplifting incident, she had recently heard of the death of two friends and that she had been drinking heavily.

The court head that Manuel had a history of shoplifting, with a conviction in 2001 and a caution in March this year.

Manuel said she was getting help with her drinking problem and that she had arranged for someone to accompany her when she went shopping so that similar incidents would not happen again.

Chairwoman of the magistrates Julie Hind said she had taken into account Manuel’s health problems and her early guilty plea, plus that she was getting help.

She gave Manuel a six-month conditional discharge, and ordered her to pay a victim surcharge of £15 and court costs of £55.