Criminal record for London shopper who mistook an avocado for loose onions
SELF-scanning dodge of the day: the man who classed all his shopping as “loose onions” at the self-service checkout in Sainsbury’s.
City recruitment consultant Nicholas Long, 25, classed his food as “loose onions” 20 times in the space of just three months.
His ruse might have worked had a security guard not spotted the scam – and that Sainsbury’s doesn’t sell loose onions.
Prosecutor Denise Murrin tells the court:
“It is a straight forward allegation that he went to Sainsbury’s and was seen scanning various items in at the self-service checkout. All items were being scanned as loose onions, but the store does not sell loose onions. It was an inexpensive way of doing his shopping.”
Odd, indeed, that Sainsbury’s has a code for loose onions but no loose onions.
Angus Mathieson, representing Long, says:
“It was a stupid thing he has done”, he said. “He was not getting a stupid amount, not substituting champagne or anything like that, but just getting an avocado and claiming it was an onion. He had got a good job at the time, but committed an offence as he felt his job was under threat and he was imminently likely to be made redundant. His girlfriend had become pregnant and he was worried about money, because in addition he had debts.”
The man who mistook an onion for an avocado is either the title of a follow up to Oliver Sachs’ book, The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat, or the title of a new TV cooking show in which hapless men get taught in the basics.
Long was sentenced to 180-hours community service, to be completed within a year, and ordered to pay £250 costs.