Supermarket workers who stole £100,000 worth of goods from their workplace have been jailed.
The trio worked at Morrisons, and systematically stole goods from the warehouse between November 2009 and August 2011 – helping themselves to alcohol, TVs and DVDs.
Martin Heyworth, aged 26, of Barnsley Road, Wombwell, pleaded guilty to the theft of the stock and was jailed for three years and four months, while 30-year-old David Chatterton, of Wath Road, Wombwell, and 56-year-old Michael Doherty, of Commonwealth View, Bolton on Dearne, were each jailed for two years.
Heyworth was employed as an assistant night manager at Morrisons in Cortonwood, Barnsley, where Chatterton and Doherty both worked.
When suspicions arose Heyworth was arrested and when police raided his home they found £18,000 worth of alcohol, TVs, DVDs, and other items – all stolen from Morrisons.
South Yorkshire Police said the cellar of his home ‘resembled an Aladdin’s cave of champagne, spirits and other alcohol’.
Det Sgt John Yoxall said: “At a time when families’ shopping expenses are stretched, these men were stealing thousands of pounds’ worth of items from a supermarket.
“This is a cost which inevitably will be passed on to the consumer in one way or another. The greed of those involved is staggering and it was this greed that led to them being caught. They all abused the trust given to them by their employer.”
He added: “It was from previous reports of suspicious behaviour that detectives were able to piece together the criminal activities of these men, and I would urge the public to report any suspicious activity that they see to the police - it could be they provide the one piece of intelligence that could uncover a much bigger crime.
“Items from supermarkets that are sold on to the public may look like a great offer but, when times are hard, we would like to remind people that you could also be in just as much trouble for handling stolen goods.
“There is now an ongoing application to seize assets under the Proceeds of Crime Act.”
A fourth man, 56-year-old William Claypole, of Littlefield Lane, Wombwell, pleaded guilty to handling a stolen TV and received a 100-hour community order.