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.

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.