A THIEF wanted to look smart when he appeared before a judge – so he stole a £224 suit.

John Faulkner, 42, helped himself to the Austin Reed suit from Boundary Mll in Colne and was then said to have threatened to stab a security guard when challenged by staff.

Burnley Crown Court heard that the offence breached an eight-month prison sentence, suspended for a year, which had also included a nine-month drugs programme.

It had been imposed last August after Faulkner had admitted house burglary with intent to steal, and two counts of theft.

Faulkner, of Glen Street, Colne, had been found with a car packed full of other people’s plants and gardening equipment in Barnoldswick on May 18.

Last Friday, the defendant turned up at court in a smart, three-piece suit.

As he waited to go into the dock, Judge Beverley Lunt asked him: “Is that your own suit?” and he replied: “It is, yes.”

The judge told him: “Okay. Just checking.”

He had been committed for sentence by Pennine magistrates after being convicted of theft in breach of the order.

The court was told he denied threatening to stab the security officer.

Judge Lunt gave him a 12- month conditional discharge and added a month to the drugs requirement.