One of the country's most prolific shoplifters admits his 515th offence

The Bolton News: Harry Hankinson. Picture by Steve Allen. Harry Hankinson. Picture by Steve Allen.

ONE of the most prolific shoplifters in the country has pleaded guilty to his 515th offence.

Bolton Magistrates Court heard how 65-year-old Harry Hankinson has a criminal record which includes 425 offences of theft and dishonesty. Steve Woodman, prosecuting, told magistrates: “It is the worst record I have ever seen.”

Mr Woodman said Hankinson was seen on CCTV taking three large packets of Gillette razor blades, valued at £60, from the Wilkinson store in Bolton on January 24.

He was arrested two days later at the Debenhams store in Manchester while allegedly committing a similar offence.

Asad Khan, defending, said that Hankinson, of Kingsley Street, Halliwell, began his criminal life in the 1970s when he suffered a brain injury in a fall from a hotel window.

Mr Khan told the court: “From that moment onwards he has had this compulsion to steal.

“When he shoplifts he is almost on autopilot.

“He offers no excuses for these offences, only remorse and apologies.”

Magistrates heard that Hankinson has previously received prison sentences and conditional discharges, but they have not stopped his behaviour.

He also has convictions for violence, sexual offences, crimes against property, drug offences and other miscellaneous crimes.

Yesterday magistrates sentenced him to remain in the court building until the end of the day and advised that he seek help for his problems.

  • In 2012, the most convicted offender in England and Wales had been convicted of 567 crimes, and a criminal with 399 offences on his record was in second place.

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Comments (9)

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2:10pm Wed 5 Mar 14

Regulatory Man says...

That sorted him out then - Stay behind in class then go and see a psychologist.

What a waste of public money and effort. Jail him for a long time and watch him then come to his senses.
That sorted him out then - Stay behind in class then go and see a psychologist. What a waste of public money and effort. Jail him for a long time and watch him then come to his senses. Regulatory Man
  • Score: 32

2:30pm Wed 5 Mar 14

hairylegs88 says...

What 515 offences and he gets no jail, no community service, no fine! That's sending out the right message. This guy needs sectioning under the Mental Health Act for he surely has a big problem.
What 515 offences and he gets no jail, no community service, no fine! That's sending out the right message. This guy needs sectioning under the Mental Health Act for he surely has a big problem. hairylegs88
  • Score: 24

2:57pm Wed 5 Mar 14

Wolfie190 says...

Stay behind for a few hours thats a new one for our judges.
Stay behind for a few hours thats a new one for our judges. Wolfie190
  • Score: 9

3:15pm Wed 5 Mar 14

Jim271 says...

He needs help, unfortunately all the hospitals are being closed.
He needs help, unfortunately all the hospitals are being closed. Jim271
  • Score: 10

3:27pm Wed 5 Mar 14

Minime666 says...

He should still be inside for his sex offences the freak!!He's clearly no good at shoplifting with a record ike that, which demonstrates hes unhinged and a public nuisance!!Jeez a few hours in court, that will really teach him a lesson!His remorse is cleary bull, as all the previous offences published say he is remorseful!!Not that remorseful the clown!!!
He should still be inside for his sex offences the freak!!He's clearly no good at shoplifting with a record ike that, which demonstrates hes unhinged and a public nuisance!!Jeez a few hours in court, that will really teach him a lesson!His remorse is cleary bull, as all the previous offences published say he is remorseful!!Not that remorseful the clown!!! Minime666
  • Score: 10

3:30pm Wed 5 Mar 14

catsden says...

put him in prison and throw away the key let him rot
put him in prison and throw away the key let him rot catsden
  • Score: 3

4:48pm Wed 5 Mar 14

goldie47 says...

weak willed judges once again
weak willed judges once again goldie47
  • Score: 8

11:59pm Wed 5 Mar 14

wsw69 says...

The magistrates are taking the p1*s out of the judicial system more than this half breed. The idiot of a so called magistrate needs sectioning - the idiot. It's totally beyond a joke of any description.
The magistrates are taking the p1*s out of the judicial system more than this half breed. The idiot of a so called magistrate needs sectioning - the idiot. It's totally beyond a joke of any description. wsw69
  • Score: 4

11:12am Thu 6 Mar 14

always lancastrian says...

How much has this chap cost the tax payers over the years in police and court time?
How many people over his 'career' have been negatively affected by his actions?

The latest brush with the courts basically gives him a green light to carry on.
How much has this chap cost the tax payers over the years in police and court time? How many people over his 'career' have been negatively affected by his actions? The latest brush with the courts basically gives him a green light to carry on. always lancastrian
  • Score: 3

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