A FORMER heroin addict stole meat after slipping back into his old ways, a court heard.

Gareth Buckton, of Barden Moor Road, Darlington stole £70 worth of meat from Sainsbury’s, in the town on January 30 – just two days after he appeared in court for similar offences.

Town Magistrates heard the 32-year-old had managed to keep off heroin for the past four years, but had relapsed after meeting up with old acquaintances.

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He admitted shoplifting when he appeared at court today (Tuesday, February 18).

Magistrates allowed the four-month community order imposed on January 28 to continue and handed Buckton a 12-month conditional discharge.

He was also ordered to pay £70 compensation.