A MAN who had been furloughed due to the coronavirus pandemic turned to shoplifting “out of desperation.”

Blackburn magistrates heard the only motivation for Sarunas Kuprevicius had for the offences was to support his family.

Kuprevicius, 24, of Randal Street, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to stealing two electric shavers worth £80 from Tesco, Hill Street, Blackburn on June 9, theft of razor blades worth £24 from the same store later the same day and possession of a pair of scissors for use in connection with theft.

Scott Parker, prosecuting, said the defendant had entered the store at 3.45 pm, put the two shavers down his pants and left without paying. At 6.20pm police were alerted by security staff who had detained the defendant when he tried to leave with the razors.

When he was interviewed Kuprevicius said he had lived in the UK for three years, the last year in Blackburn. His work as a furniture maker had stopped and out of desperation he had stolen to support his family. He said he had sold the shavers for £20 each and would have done the same with the razor blades. He admitted taking the scissors in case he had to cut off any security tags. Ben Leech, defending, said what his client had told the police was exactly what he had told him. “He knows theft is not the answer but he was desperate,” said Mr Leech. “These were relatively naïve and unsophisticated offences. He believes he has now got through the worst of the scenario presented by covid19 and he is now working again.”