Alcohol was at the root of a Milford Haven man’s evil when he was caught on camera stealing a crate of cider, a court has heard.

Anthony Joseph Manche, of Marble Hall Close, pleaded guilty to theft from a shop when he appeared at Haverfordwest magistrates court on Tuesday.

Sian Vaughan, prosecuting, told the bench that Manche was identified from CCTV footage after stealing a crate of Strongbow Cider, worth £10, from the Best One store, Charles Street, on January 26.

The cider, worth £10, was not recovered, and the court heard that Manche, 36, had a ‘catalogue of similar offending’.

He admitted the theft when interviewed, but claimed he could not remember anything about the incident.

Jonathan Webb, defending, said: “Alcohol is the root of Mr Manche’s evil. He is trying his very best to change his ways.”

Mr Webb added that Manche’s offending had become ‘more sporadic’ in recent years, and only occurred when he ‘fell of the wagon’.

He told the court that Manche was prescribed strong medication for his health problems, and may have suffered a black-out due to an overdose.

“Perhaps on this day he had over-done the medication, he did not know what he was doing and reverted to type.”

Manche was fined £80 and ordered to pay £10 compensation, £85 court costs and a £30 victim surcharge.