A JUDGE has compared the case of a French man who stole food from a Dublin supermarket to a scene from Les Miserables.
Judge Anthony Halpin said that in the musical, someone steals a loaf of bread to feed their family.
He was commenting in the case of Sebastien Tempereau (25), who shoplifted from Dunnes Stores to get food for himself and his girlfriend.
Tempereau, of St Donagh’s Park, Donaghmede, pleaded guilty to the theft of €104 worth of groceries at the shop on Henry Street last April 22. He also admitted stealing €53 worth of groceries from the same shop on April 24.
Judge Halpin struck the charges out.
Tempereau was embarrassed about what happened and asked Judge Halpin to leave him without convictions, his lawyer said.
“At one stage in this country, if one were to steal a loaf of bread one would be deported to Van Diemen’s Land,” the judge said.
“In fact, the opening scene from that famous production, Les Miserables from your own country, started with the stealing of a loaf of bread to feed a family.”
He said he accepted the accused’s “heartfelt expression of remorse” and that he had been in “dire need of something to eat”.