A 42-year-old man with a “heroin problem” appeared in court today charged with stealing two wallets from shoppers in MarketPlace.

Troy Woods of Devonshire stole Magdalene Oldfield’s wallet on January 15 and Lyn Miranda’s on January 29.

Crown counsel Susan Mulligan told the court in the first incident, Mrs Oldfield was shopping in the Church Street store and she realised her wallet was missing when she went to pay for her goods.

Mrs Oldfield called her husband who went to HSBC to cancel her credit cards. While at the bank, Mr Oldfield was told the credit card had been used to buy six cartons of cigarettes for $545 at Match Box in the Washington Mall.

Police viewed CCTV footage at MarketPlace and saw the defendant taking the wallet. CCTV footage from Washington Mall also showed him buying the cigarettes.

On another occasion, January 29, Ms Miranda was shopping in MarketPlace when Woods approached her and snatched her wallet from her shopping cart.

Woods then ran from the store and was stopped by police who were outside. The officers arrested him and took him to the Hamilton Police station.

He admitted stealing both wallets.

Addressing the court, Woods said: “I’m sorry for what I done. I have a heroin problem.

“I’ll pay them back. I’ll pay the money back.”

Magistrate Khamisi Tokunbo ordered presentencing reports and granted Woods $3,000 bail until March 24 when he will be sentenced.