A man with a string of concvictions so long it stretches to 75 pages of foolscap paper, notched his 650th offence on the Fylde coast.
Patrick Ryan’s list of convictions is now so long that police and court staff no longer print it all out to try and save paper.
To say my client is a persistent offender is an under statement
Ryan, 61, of Fox Street, Preston, has committed offences the length and breadth of Britain and is believed to be one of the most prolific criminals in the country.
And for his 650th crime, he chose the market town of Poulton.
He travelled by train from Preston, spent time in a church and then went out and stole two bottles of Honoro Vera red wine, valued at £12.90, from a branch of Booths supermarket.
Ryan admitted the theft.
Pam Smith, prosecuting, said Ryan was seen trying to leave the store without paying and when asked by a store member to halt, the bottles were found inhis bag.
Ryan, who is on Jobseekers Allowance, was given a 12-month conditional discharge by chairman of the Bench Ian Robertson who told him:”That means keep out of trouble for a year – we shall see.”
His lawyer Peter Manning said: “To say my client is a persistent offender is an under statement
“But he has calmed down a little these days.”
“He has not got many shoplifting convictions on his record over the years.
“This was perhaps a relapse as he is trying to put his alcohol problems behind him.”
“He travelled to Poulton and then went to church before being tempted to steal the wine. His judgement was obviously blurred.”