Wine fine be­low the belt

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS -

A bot­tle of wine con­cealed down a Pa­pakowhai man’s pants was re­cov­ered by Porirua New World and re- sold, sav­ing the thief from hav­ing to pay repa­ra­tion.

Mu­sic stu­dent Aaron Paul Grey, 40, stole the wine on July 20, but was caught by staff.

He had opened an­other bot­tle of wine and was drink­ing from it when he was ar­rested.

In Porirua Dis­trict Court last Tues­day, Judge Chris Tuohy con­victed Grey of shoplift­ing and or­dered him to pay $35 to New World for the two bot­tles.

How­ever, Grey’s lawyer, Me­gan Boyd, ar­gued he should pay only $14.99 for the bot­tle Grey opened, be­cause the other was re­cov­ered by New World.

‘‘I as­sumed that the pants one wouldn’t have been sold,’’ Judge Tuohy said.

‘‘Hope­fully they wiped it with sani­tiser first,’’ Ms Boyd said.

The $ 14.99 repa­ra­tion was agreed to.

Grey had also been con­victed of steal­ing wine from a su­per­mar­ket in May. Both times he had ar­gued with fam­ily and re­sorted to al­co­hol to cope, Ms Boyd said.

Grey had a sig­nif­i­cant his­tory of of­fend­ing, but his be­hav­iour was im­prov­ing and he was no longer re­sort­ing to vi­o­lence.

Judge Tuohy rec­om­mended Grey at­tend a res­i­den­tial al­co­hol and drug pro­gramme.

‘‘ Th­ese are the of­fences of some­one who is re­ally and deeply al­co­holic and not in con­trol at all,’’ he told Grey.

‘‘Noth­ing else will go right in your life un­less you deal with your drink­ing.’’

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