A WAREHOUSEMAN who stole returned kitchen goods from his workplace and sold them on eBay has been sentenced to do unpaid work.

Bolton Crown Court heard how 45-year-old Mark Livesey had worked at the Farnworth distribution depot of kitchen appliance firm Waterline since 2011.

Timothy Greenald, prosecuting, said that Livesey's job involved working in the warehouse area where returned stock and rejected fixtures and fittings were kept.

But Livesey, who later told police he was £10,000 in debt following the break up of his marriage, began taking the goods, reconditioning them and they were sold via his ex-girlfriend's eBay account.

"The goods found a ready market," said Mr Greenald.

In total he stole 65 items, ranging from taps and sinks to a fridge freezer and cooker, making himself £6,225 profit from happy buyers.

Livesey was eventually caught when an anonymous letter was sent to his employers in January this year.

He was given the option of resigning rather than facing the sack and police were called.

The court heard that Waterline did not suffer financially as they had been reimbursed for the items by manufacturers.

Livesey, of Barton Road, Farnworth, has no previous convictions and pleaded guilty to theft.

Adrian Palmer, defending, said "He has not lived an affluent or showy lifestyle. It has gone towards living expenses."

He added that Livesey, who is single, has not found other work and is unable to claim benefits because he resigned.

Sentencing Livesey to a two-year community order and ordering that he do 250 hours unpaid work, Judge Peter Davies told him: "Theft from employers is doubly serious because it breaches the trust of those who employ you."