A MAN accused of a series of low-level shoplifting offences, mostly committed at village convenience stores, is to be brought to court to view cctv footage of the alleged thefts.

Simon Marcus Freeman is facing five counts of theft from mainly Co-op stores in villages in the Durham area, but also from a branch of McColl’s and from Savers, Health and Beauty, in the city centre.

Items said to have been stolen in the thefts, between April 10 and May 10, include jars of coffee, chocolate, laundry and food items.

A schedule of similar offences, which the Crown believe he may have also been responsible for, is expected to be put to the defendant at a future hearing.

Appearing unrepresented at a plea hearing at Durham Crown Court, via video link from the city’s nearby prison, where Freeman is on remand, he admitted two of the thefts and denied the other three.

Read more: Shoplifter stole alcohol worth £3,000 from County Durham shops

But he was vague as to his recollection of some of the alleged incidents and Judge Ray Singh said it may prove beneficial for him to be brought to court for a future hearing so he could view footage from the shops involved to see if he accepts it was him captured in the act on cctv.

Freeman agreed and Judge Singh said in that case he would not set a trial date for the matters which are, at the moment, contested, as that may not be until October or November.

The case was adjourned until July 4, when the 33-year-old defendant, of Prince Charles Avenue, Bowburn, will be produced at court.

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