Man found wearing jacket with tags on guilty of shoplifting

A man shoplifted a jacket from a Marks and Spencer store in Kingston by concealing it under his coat, a court heard today.<--break->“></p>

<p>Magistrates at Wimbledon Magistrates Court found that Angel Pokoko Makizembe, of Pheasant Close, Purley, removed security tags in the changing rooms before attempting to leave the shop wearing the £120 blazer without making any attempt to pay on 4<sup>th</sup> December 2011.</p>

<p>Magistrates rejected Makizembe’s claims that he had bought the jacket three weeks earlier and had returned to the store to exchange it to enable him to buy clothes for his son. Makizembe told the court he did not have a receipt for the item because his baby’s mother lost it. “My baby mother lost the receipt. She’s not here”, explained Makizembe.</p>

<p>Makizembe later contradicted his evidence when he told the court he was wearing the jacket, which still had the store tags on it when he was searched by police, because he was cold, “I did not go to get no refund. I didn’t want to swap the jacket. I was wearing it because I was cold”.</p>

<p>In a statement read to the court Russell Wilmott, Section Manager at Marks and Spencer Kingston menswear department, reported that “no such jacket had been sold” at the store after 1 November.</p>

<p>Marks and Spencer security guard Ibrahim Aboucharakra, told the court how Makizembe had entered the fitting rooms in the Clarence Street store with eight items, and left with seven. When challenged, the defendant “said he didn’t have anything on him.”</p>

<p>Makizembe was found guilty of theft and was released on bail pending a probation report, which the Magistrate said would be a “full report leaving all options open, including a custodial sentence” because of his previous offending.</p>

<p>Makizembe will be sentenced on 30<sup>th</sup> March.</p>

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