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Former hostel residents given conditional discharge for theft of vodka and whiskey from Lidl

One of the co-accused's solicitors said while staying at the Simon Community his client had 'come into contact with the other male and they started drinking'

A Portadown pair who stole a bottle of vodka and a bottle of Bushmills whiskey from Lidl have been conditionally discharged for two years.

Court heard that the offences occurred whilst both men were residing at the Linen Court Hostel in Armagh.

Paul Davidson, 35, of Westland Road, and Nash Beattie, 23, of Churchill Park, pleaded guilty to theft at the city’s Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Prosecution outlined that on September 24, police received a report from staff at Lidl in the Spires, Armagh, that two males had entered the store making off with a bottle of vodka and a bottle of Bushmills whiskey.

Officers viewed CCTV and were able to identify one of the males as Beattie, who was residing in the Linen Court Hostel.

Police apprehended Beattie and located Davidson, who matched the other male in the footage.

Officers were able to seize a bottle of vodka from Davidson and the bottle of whiskey from Beattie.

When interviewed, Davidson stated he could not remember the incident but accepted it was more than likely him.

Defence solicitor Philip Reid, who represented Davidson, said: “He has one previous for theft back in 2001 when he was a youth. Most of his record is for breaches of non-molestation orders and restraining orders in relation to an ex-partner.

“At the time he had been residing at the Simon Community hostel in Armagh. He had come into contact with the other male and they started drinking.”

He added: “This was an opportunistic matter. He is now back in Portadown. He has had no problems with his ex-partner and is through my solicitor trying to get contact with his child.”

Defence barrister Conor Lunny, who represented the co-defendant, stated: “I echo the words of Mr Reid, although Beattie does have a slightly more relevant record and he was on licence at the time.”

Both men were handed a conditional discharge for a period of two years.

Davidson was ordered to pay compensation of £12 for the vodka and Beattie £14 for the whiskey.

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