A PLEA from a serial offender that he wanted to go on a drug rehabilitation course cut no ice with a judge who jailed him for 16 months.

Southampton Crown Court finally ran out of patience with James Henderson who went shoplifting, despite having three suspended sentences hanging over his head.

One, said prosecutor Tim Compton, had only been imposed a week before the thief entered a Tesco store and took a packet of ham and a packet of burgers worth £10.

Henderson, 53, of Denzil Avenue, Southampton, who admitted theft, was said to have 58 previous convictions for 117 offences.

As Judge Peter Ralls QC was about to pass sentence, Henderson stood up in the dock and said he wanted to go on the rehabilitation course.

“I’m sorry for wasting the court’s time but I want a chance to show I am changing my ways. Coming off drugs is not easy.”

The judge accepted that was the case but the court could not carry on giving him suspended sentences.