A man from Stevenage has been handed a Criminal Behaviour Order after shoplifting offences in Welwyn Hatfield.

Wayne Hyde, 46, of Scarborough Avenue, pleaded guilty to more than 20 shoplifting offences in Welwyn Hatfield, stealing items with a combined value of around £13,000.

He particularly targeted John Lewis in Welwyn Garden City.

Hyde was given a two-year Criminal Behaviour Order when he appeared at St Albans Crown Court on Friday, April 19.

It banned him from entering any John Lewis store in the east of England, and from entering the B&M store in Hatfield.

He is also banned from Welwyn Garden City town centre (Bridge Road, Church Road and Osborne Road) for a year, except when passing through in a vehicle.

Breaching a Criminal Behaviour Order is a criminal offence so if Hyde fails to comply, he can be arrested. Hyde must also take part in a rehabilitation programme.

Hyde was remanded at the beginning of the year and police officers built a case to present to the court.

PC Cameron Abraham, from the Welwyn Hatfield Neighbourhood Policing Team, led the case. He said: “We were determined to secure a CBO for Hyde as we understand the impact that such persistent offending has on our communities. With the dedicated help of our Welwyn Hatfield Community Safety Unit, we made it happen.

“Taking a preventative approach to crime is important to us and so we also worked closely with the Loss Prevention Officers at John Lewis to see how we could help them reduce shoplifting in the long-term. This involved regular meetings and has resulted in upgraded CCTV.

“I am pleased that our application for the CBO was successful and I hope this news reassures the local business community that we are committed to tackling shoplifting. We’ve received positive feedback from John Lewis and I am glad we’ve been able to help.

“It was a real team effort. I would like to say a special thank you to ASB Officer Debbie Georgiou for her tireless support building the case and to PC James Tassell who has greatly assisted with implementing the longer-term plan to tackle shoplifting at John Lewis.

"A special thanks also goes to PCSO Emma Carson who helped with evidence collection and Crime Prevention Officer Darren Cowell who produced a helpful report that has fed into the long-term plan.”