The Warehouse lost $300,000 in stolen goods last year, which was why it took a tough line on shoplifters, Nelson District Court was told yesterday.
Margaret Ann O'Donovan, 51, of Nelson admitted two charges of shoplifting after she was caught stealing baby clothes worth a total $269.82 on two separate occasions.
Prosecutor Sergeant Graeme Eden said O'Donovan was in the Warehouse in Nelson in May, shopping with her daughter.
They walked around the baby clothing department placing numerous items into a basket the defendant was carrying.
She placed several items of adult clothing on top of the baby items and went into a changing room.
She emerged several minutes later and placed the basket which still contained the adult clothing items on the ground and walked out of the store.
Warehouse staff found the basket containing empty wrappers and labels from baby clothes beneath the adult clothes.
A couple of weeks later O'Donovan went back to the store and, watched by security staff, she walked around the store selecting items from the shelves.
She was seen placing items of baby clothes down the front of her trousers. As staff approached she removed the items and dropped them on the floor.
Shoplifting goods worth less than $500 carries a maximum penalty of three months in prison.
Judge Tom Broadmore said the cost of shoplifting was borne by the public in higher priced goods.
On both charges O'Donovan was convicted and fined $150. Reparation had been paid for the items of clothing that could not be re-sold.
- © Fairfax NZ News