England

Thomas Mason, who has 266 convictions, jailed for shoplifting

A thief with more than 260 convictions has been jailed for threatening supermarket staff with a knife.

Thomas Mason, 67, brandished a six-inch blade when he was challenged stealing alcohol and a deep-fat fryer from Morrisons in Penrith in May.

Carlisle Crown Court heard that Mason, of Sunderland, had 266 convictions dating back five decades.

He admitted possessing a bladed weapon and using threatening behaviour. He was jailed for 16 months.

Prosecuting, Francis McEntee said Mason became agitated when a store detective mentioned calling police and pointed a knife at him.

The hearing was told that Mason, of Hylton Road, had a history of mental health problems.

Sentencing him, Judge Peter Davies said: "You have an appalling record. You should have left your previous convictions long behind you."

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