Get all your news in one place.
100’s of premium titles.
One app.
Start reading
The Guardian - UK
The Guardian - UK
Jessica Murray Midlands correspondent

Man who stole 200,000 Cadbury Creme Eggs jailed for 18 months

Creme Egg
Joby Pool, 32, stole more than £31,000 worth of chocolate eggs when he broke into an industrial unit in Telford on 11 February. Photograph: Graham Turner/The Guardian

A man referred to as the “Easter bunny” by police has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for stealing almost 200,000 Cadbury Creme Eggs.

Joby Pool, 32, stole more than £31,000 worth of the chocolate eggs when he broke into an industrial unit in Telford on 11 February and made off with the haul in a stolen lorry cab.

Joby Pool
Joby Pool Photograph: West Mercia Police

Judge Anthony Lowe jailed Pool for 18 months at Shrewsbury crown court on Thursday, half to be spent in prison and the other half on licence. The six months he has already spent in custody will be counted towards his nine months in jail.

During a previous court hearing, prosecutor Owen Beale said Pool had used a metal grinder to break into an industrial unit belonging to SW Group Logistics in Stafford Park, Telford, and tow away the trailer containing the creme eggs.

Beale said Pool was stopped by police as he was travelling northbound on the M42 in a vehicle that had been stolen from the Yorkshire area in October. He walked towards police “with his hands up” near junction 11.

“This clearly wasn’t spur-of-the-moment offending, if I can put it like that, because he had taken with him a tractor unit and he had to know that the load was there in the first place,” said Beale. “This is clearly an organised criminal matter. You don’t just happen to learn about a trailer with that kind of value being available.”

Defending Pool, Debra White said he had shown genuine remorse for what he had done, and was sorry for the effect it had had on his family and the business involved.

Judge Lowe said he was not convinced Pool was the only person involved in the planning of the theft. “If one looks at what must have happened here, we are looking at a significant degree of planning. There must have been inside information or a recce to identify the trailer and if it was worth taking,” he said.

“I am pretty sure others would have been involved in this enterprise. I don’t know what you intended to do with the trailer.”

Shortly after his arrest, West Mercia police described the incident in a series of tweets as an “eggs-travagant theft” of a “chocolate collection box”.

“West Mercia police has helped save Easter for Creme Egg fans after almost 200,000 of the chocolate treats were stolen from a unit in Stafford Park in Telford,” they said.

“Shortly after the theft a vehicle, presumably purporting to be the Easter bunny, was stopped northbound on the M42 and a man was arrested on suspicion of theft.”

Pool, from Tingley, near Leeds, had previously admitted theft, criminal damage to a lock at the trailer park and driving without insurance.

Sign up to read this article
Read news from 100’s of titles, curated specifically for you.
Already a member? Sign in here
Related Stories
Top stories on inkl right now
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Already a member? Sign in here
Our Picks
Fourteen days free
Download the app
One app. One membership.
100+ trusted global sources.