A manager stole more then £57,000 worth of luxury pens so he could “bank roll” nights out with his friends, a court heard.
Craig Shepherd committed the offending while he was entrusted to run the Pen Shop in Leeds Trinity shopping centre.
Leeds Crown Court heard Shepherd was in charge of the stock and stole high value pens over a two year period before the offending came to light.
Martin Robertshaw, prosecuting, said Shepherd stole Mount Blanc pens worth a total of £57,513. Shepherd sold the pens online and made a total of £37,671 for himself.
The offending came to light in June last year. Shepherd went off sick when his boss contacted him to say he wanted to speak to him but he failed to return to work. Shepherd, 36, of Stanmore Place, Burley, Leeds was arrested after police were contacted but he refused to comment.
He pleaded guilty to theft and converting criminal property. Shufquat Khan, mitigating, said Shepherd committed the offence after getting heavily into debt and was sorry for what he had done.
Mr Khan said Shepherd was originally from Edinburgh and had been sent to manage the Pen Shop in Leeds after working his way up in the country.
He said: “He would pay for others on nights out.
“He doesn’t have a partner but spends a lot of time with others, bank rolling their events and activities.
“He said he used the money so he could have friends in his life.” Mr Khan added that Shepherd was sorry for what he had done and had pleaded guilty at an early stage.
The court heard Shepherd had managed to find a new job as a manager at a Poundland store. Shepherd was given a 16 month prison sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to do 240 hours unpaid work.
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