Judge frustrated at inability to ban cheap flight shoplifters from UK

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Two Polish shoplifters who repeatedly flew into British airports purely to steal duty free perfumes have been jailed.

Pawel Lenard, 35, and Magdalena Rezler, 34, who each admitted two counts of theft, used cheap Ryanair flights to visit Bristol, Edinburgh and Glasgow before returning to Poland. The pair visited the World Duty Free store at Bristol Airport while waiting for connecting flights.

CCTV images twice caught married father-of-one Lenard and mother-of-one Rezler, pulling dozens of boxes of luxury perfumes such as Chanel into baskets worth £4,588.60.

Bristol Crown Court heard that police – alerted by a passenger – arrested the pair as they waited to board their next flight. Officers discovered 40 boxes of perfume, worth £2,638.40, in their suitcases

Recorder David Evans told the pair, from the Polish town of Krzyz Wielkopolski, he wished to ban them from Britain but could not.

The judge sentenced both to two months in prison but acknowledged they had already spent a month in custody and would probably be released instantly.

“Much as I would like to prevent the two of you from ever coming back to this country, I cannot,” the judge told them. “I don’t have the power.”

Lenard and Rezler booked cheap flights from Poland to British airports in July, August, September, October and December of last year. “You came to this country purely to steal,” the judge said..

The court heard Lenard had carried out the thefts because his wage did not cover his mortgage. Rezler said she had been separated from her 10-year-old son since her arrest and, like Lenard, was anxious to return to Poland.