Leeds addict robbed to buy his Christmas presents

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A prolific criminal robbed a newsagents in order to buy Christmas presents just three weeks after being released from prison.

Alexander Putland, 26, was returned to prison for 20 months after carrying out the raid at the shop on Vicar Lane in Leeds city centre on December 3 last year.

Leeds Crown Court heard Putland left the shop keeper with injuries to his knee by throwing him to the ground as he stole £300 from the till.

Patrick Gallagher, prosecuting, said Putland entered the shop with a hood over his head and made the shop keeper feel uneasy over the length of time he was spending in the premises.

He left and but returned on two further occasion before carrying out the robbery by bursting in as the victim had his back to the door.

Putland, of Elmete Way, Oakwood, grabbed cash from the till but was grabbed by the shop keeper who shouted for help. He knocked the man to the floor and fled but was arrested after his fingerprint was found on the till. He pleaded guilty to robbery. After his arrest he told police he took the money to buy Christmas presents for his mum and his partner who had supported him despite being sent to jail.

Putland has a long criminal history for burglary, robbery and violence and has spent a number of periods in custody.

The court heard Putland’s offences are linked to his long-standing addiction to drugs. Abbi Whelan, mitigating, said Putland recognised he would be facing a significant prison sentence and would use the time in custody to address his drug abuse and offending.

Jailing him, judge Geoffrey Marson QC said: “The offence was committed only three weeks after being released from prison. The courts have tried time and again to offer assistance by making non-custodial orders which you have breached.”

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