A THIEF who stole more than £600 from a foodbank in Nelson has been jailed.

Kenneth Burrows, 41, walked into the Grassroots Centre at St Philip’s Church in Leeds Road, during opening hours.

He got into a filing cabinet and stole a petty cash container containing £648.14.

A senior police officer condemned the theft as ‘a pernicious crime that impacts on the community’s psyche’.

Burrows, of Garrick Street, Nelson, pleaded guilty to the offence, which Burnley magistrates took into consideration when sentencing him to 84 days in prison.

The offender, who was known to the charity, was arrested and charged after police officers spotted him on the church’s CCTV footage.

The court heard that staff at the centre had set the alarm and locked up as usual at the end of the working day on January 20, only discovering the theft and reporting it to police at 1pm the next day.

Insp Paul Goodall, of Pendle Police, said: “I’m conscious of the fact we are living in difficult times, and many people are struggling but that does not excuse this offence.

“Many of the people that would have benefited from the money stolen from this charity are vulnerable, and are likely to be worse off than the offender.

“This is one of those pernicious crimes that impacts on the community’s psyche. It is completely unacceptable.”