Man to face court after admitting to £15,000 cigarette stealing spree

Herts police and trading standards officers seized £10,000 worth of illegal cigarettes from a Steven

A man has admitted to stealing more than £15,000 worth of cigarettes over a four month period last year. - Credit: Archant

A man has admitted to stealing more than £15,000 worth of cigarettes from various shops in Letchworth, Royston and the surrounding area.

Lee Walsh, 36 and of Eleanor Cross Road in Waltham Cross, pleaded guilty to stealing £15,236.91 worth of cigarettes from supermarkets and corner shops between April 11 and August 17 last year. 

Walsh began his spree by stealing £831 worth of cigarettes belonging to McColls in Royston on April 11 2020.

He moved onto Co-op in Leighton Buzzard on April 15, stealing £230 of cigarettes, before taking more Co-op stock in Whitstable, Kent on May 12, where he stole £2,000 worth of cigarettes.

He struck at One Stop, Cambridge and took £3571.91 worth of cigarettes on May 29, before taking another £2,000 worth of stock from Co-op in Ely.

And in Letchworth, he stole £5,000 worth of tobacco and vaping equipment belonging to Tesco on August 17 - totalling more than £15,000 worth of stolen stock in four months.

Walsh will be sentenced at St Albans Crown Court next month, and he has also been banned from any McColls, Tesco, Co-op or One Stop stores in England and Wales.