A HEROIN addict raided three Co-op stores multiple times stealing meat, instant coffee, and wine to fund his habit, all while subject to a community order for threatening another man with a shovel.

Daniel Smith had been handed a community order by the court on May 12 for affray following an incident in Ystradgynlais on November 3 last year.

However, while subject to that order, he raided three Co-op stores in Swansea, prosecutor Harry Dickens told the court.

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On July 15, Smith stole £138 of items from the Walter Road store, including 13 jars of Nescafe instant coffee, jars of another brand of coffee, and two bottles of wine.

He hit the same store again on August 13, Mr Dickens said, stealing “a number of meat items”.

Two days later, he stole a Cadbury’s milk tray, five bars of chocolate and jars of coffee from the Co-op on Bryn Road.

And on August 20, Smith twice raided the store on Trawler Road, stealing washing powder, air freshener, deodorants, shampoos and conditioners, and skincare products.

The court heard Smith, 24, now of Castle Street in Swansea, has 20 previous convictions for 44 offences, including for shoplifting, theft from a dwelling, and making off without payment.

Smith had to be resentenced for the affray charge as he had reoffended during the course of his community order.

Mr Dickens said police were called at around 8.30pm on November 3 last year due to a confrontation between a group of people on Gurnos Road in Ystradgynlais.

Mobile phone footage played in court showed Smith threatening a man with a shovel, while the other man had a meat cleaver.

He had been remanded in to custody after failing to comply with the terms of his community order and then failing to attend court.

Amelia Pike, defending, said Smith had “lived a criminal lifestyle since the age of 16” and now wanted to “change his life for the better”.

“At the time of the shoplifting offences he was of no fixed abode and was using substances on a daily basis,” she said.

“Shoplifting became part of his lifestyle to fund his heroin habit.”

She said Smith had asked to be sent to prison as he “felt safe” and could work on kicking his addiction while behind bars.

“In his current mindset he is not in a position to comply with probation,” she said.

Judge Catherine Richards expressed concern the thefts would have had on the staff at the three stores and their safety and security while at work.

She sentenced Smith to three months for each theft, running concurrently, and an additional four months for the affray.

He received no separate penalty for failing to surrender.