Thief's security advice to Tesco

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The Independent Online
The supermarket giant Tesco last night revealed that James Heritage - a lifelong shoplifter it wants to ban from all its stores - has worked for the firm as a security advisor.

This week, Tesco will go to the High Court in a bid to have him barred. Mr Heritage, 37, says he will not contest Tesco's action. He has already been banned by Sainsbury's. The father of two daughters says the ban is his only hope of breaking a 22-year criminal habit.

Mr Heritage, of Hillfields, Coventry, has served 10 prison terms and has been prosecuted more than 40 times for shoplifting, yet he claims he has only been caught once in every 500 jobs. He once made 17 trips to the same supermarket in just three-and-a-half hours and escaped without arrest.

"I have met with Tesco security in Coventry on four or five occasions. I knew I had to do something to give up shoplifting and thought I could work as a security consultant.

"In the end, I blew it, because while I was meeting with Tesco, I carried on stealing."

Alan Goodman, Tesco's head of security, said: "There is an old adage that if you want to catch a thief, you use a thief."