‘Professional Shoplifter’ Allegedly Steals Over $30k Worth of Alcohol In String of Thefts
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‘Professional Shoplifter’ Allegedly Steals Over $30k Worth of Alcohol In String of Thefts

‘Professional Shoplifter’ Allegedly Steals Over $30k Worth of Alcohol In String of Thefts

(Photo: Keith Srakocic/AP Photo)

A group of alleged alcohol thieves appeared in court on Monday. One of the thieves, described as a “professional shoplifter,” was accused of stealing £27,000 (about USD $33,000) worth of alcohol in a string of thefts. 

This week 25-year-old Cristian Miron, 34-year-old Robert Cristea and 34-year-old Albert Mihai appeared before the Liverpool Crown Court.

Miron previously pleaded guilty to eight counts of theft, according to Echo. These thefts occurred between Oct. 2021 and Dec. 2022 in supermarkets across the UK and amounted to £27,662 (about USD $34,000) worth of alcohol.

Mihai and Cristea pleaded guilty to one count of theft. Specifically, a Dec. 10, 2022 incident at an Asda. 

The prosecutor, Eric Lamb indicated that Miron played a leading role in the series of thefts that were all carried out in a similar manner.

“The offenses took place in various parts of the country using the same methods,” said Lamb. “A group entered the supermarket with a trolley, filled it with boxes of alcohol, and while the accomplices distracted the staff, the trolley was brought out to a waiting car.” 

The first theft that Miron was connected to occurred on Oct. 20, 2021, at a Tesco. In this instance, £5,000 worth of alcohol was stolen. On Nov. 11 an additional £2494 worth of alcohol was stolen from an Asda. One Tesco was even hit twice by the shoplifters, totaling  £14,180 worth of alcohol being taken. In April, Miron was finally caught for stealing £420 worth of alcohol from yet another Tesco.  

The arrest didn’t stop Miron from continuing his crime streak, while under investigation he proceed to take £2146 worth of alcohol from an Asda on April 29. The last incident occurred on Dec. 10, 2022, where all three defendants entered an Asda and stole almost £3,000 worth of alcohol, as reported by Echo.

Miron was identified and linked to the thefts using CCTV footage. He has three previous offenses for theft in the UK and one in Romania. Mihahi has ten previous convictions, but Cristea has no previous convictions.

“Regarding Mr. Miron, unfortunately, he is a professional shoplifter and he accepts that. He traveled to different areas around the country to commit these offenses,” said the defense attorney, Dhaneshwar Sharma. “His motivation is related to poor lifestyle choices and forward-thinking, and difficulties managing money.”

Sharma added that Miron does not struggle with alcohol or drugs and the motivation for the thefts was financial gain. 

Miron was sentenced to 27 months imprisonment for his role as a leader of the thefts. The court sentenced Miahi to six-month imprisonment with two years suspended, in addition to completing 200 hours of unpaid work plus 20 rehabilitation days. The court gave Cristea a community order for 28 months and 150 hours of unpaid work along with completing 15 rehabilitation days.

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Jessica Gleman is the managing editor of Rum Raiders. She received her Ph.D. at the University College of Dublin in Ireland, where she studied the archaeology of ancient alcohol. Jessica has a passion for the alcohol industry, including agriculture, distillation and mixology. When Jessica is not writing about rum, she is also a travel and food enthusiast who loves going around the world and experiencing various cuisines and cultures. She is enthusiastic about sharing her knowledge and expertise and learning even more about this amazing spirit.