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Convicted drug dealer avoids jail

By This is Devon  |  Posted: January 12, 2011

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A CONVICTED drug dealer and recovering heroin addict has avoided jail after stealing while facing a deferred sentence.

Plymouth magistrates deferred sentence on Wayne Matthews for a shoplifting offence for three months in December to see whether he could kick his habit and stay out of trouble.

But Matthews, aged 35, of Beaumont Road, St Judes, stole again on January 5.

He admitted taking a vacuum cleaner worth £219 from Comet.

Matthews had earlier admitted theft of two MP3 docking stations worth £150 from BHS in Plymouth on December 10.

Magistrates have now sentenced him for a total of 120 days in prison but suspended the term for 12 months for both offences.

He was ordered to do a six-month Drug Rehabilitation Requirement, which will treat and test him for his drug addiction.

Matthews must also pay £219 in compensation to Comet.

Paul Brookman, for Matthews, admitted he had a 'lengthy record'.

He added that the previous offences were to fuel a drug addiction but the latest theft was to pay an outstanding drug debt.

Mr Brookman said that Matthews bumped into two people who demanded that he steal the vacuum cleaner to clear what he owned them.

The court heard that Matthews was already working with drug counselling service Harbour and had been tested negative for street drugs.

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  • ClaireLawson  |  September 05 2012, 8:14PM

    I'm his ex partner, we have 4 children together that he has completely let down, having to go to school and have people point out that he has been sent back to prison, I've lost count how many times he's been in prison, he hasnt seen his children in years. He made my life hell I suffered years of violence and abuse, which has caused deafness to me in one of my ears. People on hear making comments how he's trying, he's never tried in his life. I had to completely rebuild my life and children's once I finally built up the courage to get him out of my house, everything was sold under my feet. Police raids early in the morning whilst we were asleep, doors being smashed by police, please don't feel sorry for this person.

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  • timplymouth  |  August 24 2011, 8:07PM

    Yes, if Morrisons had more shoplifters they would have to charge more. They would probably hire more security guards and fit more CCTV cameras. Whether that would make them more expensive than tesco depends on a lot of things. The shoplifting cost is only a minor cost, I never said it was a huge cost. However it IS a cost and it DOES affect the price. The idea that stealing from big shops is a victimless crime is pure fantasy.

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  • rosieljp  |  August 24 2011, 5:15PM

    timplymouth, so if there were more shoplifters at morrisons than tesco, morrisons would have to charge more than tesco? how does that make morrisons competitive? Prices in supermarkets have nothing to do with shoplifting rates and if they did then supermarkets wouldn't be able to compete as they do now. Off back to school and this time concentrate...

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  • timplymouth  |  August 24 2011, 4:24PM

    Yes they would rosie. Certainly in the supermarkets which are highly competitive. Also certainly in areas such as consumer electronics where the retailers are finding it hard to compete with internet sites on prices. If any shop didn't reduce their prices they would find all the customers would switch to their competitors would had reduced their prices. I don't think you understand how our free market economy works.

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  • rosieljp  |  August 24 2011, 3:50PM

    timplymouth, you are naive, prices won't come down in shops if all shoplifting stopped.

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  • news4u  |  August 24 2011, 3:46PM

    Josdave..........sadly on this occassion Judge G cannot be blamed as this was heard at Magistrates and the honerable Judge only presides over cases in the Crown Court

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  • josdave  |  August 24 2011, 2:30PM

    Already on a deferred sentence and he offends again. How lenient can the courts be? As others have said the victims get no consideration from the "justice"system at all. OK so he is drug free at the moment but his record says he should have been sent to prison. I would not be surprised if it was GIlbert.

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  • timplymouth  |  August 24 2011, 2:18PM

    Feel sympathy for yourself then rosie, we all pay for shoplifters through higher prices.

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  • rosieljp  |  August 24 2011, 2:03PM

    @jmonners My comments stem from Darrens input, sounds like this guy is trying to get his life together, coming off heroin is something he should be proud of. Somehow i can't get any sympathy together for shops and things, i tend to feel sympathy for people and i also try not to sit in judgement of anybody without knowing the full facts and imagining what it must be like to walk in their shoes.

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  • Marksensible  |  August 24 2011, 1:34PM

    It doesn't say in the article but was this the excellent decision of Judge Gilbert again by any chance??

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