A fine wine lover tried to walk out of Harrods with a bottle of Romanée-Conti worth £20,000
A thief described as “more of a connoisseur than a criminal mastermind” faces prison after walking out of Harrods with a bottle of fine wine worth £20,000.
Boris Chaudemanche, 34, snatched the rare Cru from the Knightsbridge store on December 6.
The fine wine lover was stopped as he tried to leave the shop but insists he insists he had no idea the bottle of Romanée-Conti was worth £19,995.
Prosecutor Stuart Stevens said the thief went into Harrods carrying a large roll of tin-foil, apparently with the intention of tucking stolen items inside.
Mr Stevens told Hammersmith Magistrates Court: “It appears that he is more of a connoisseur than a criminal mastermind.
“He could not believe it [the bottle] was worth that much. He thought it was [worth] about £45 to £70.
“When officers told him how much it was worth, he just said ‘What?’.
“He goes on to say it was a bad bad thing, he was wrong to do it and he would not do it again.”
Chaudemanche had previous convictions for driving offences, but none for theft.
Speaking in a strong French accent Chaudemanche, who was not represented by a lawyer in court, confessed to drinking a bottle of whisky every two days.
District Judge Tan Ikram asked: “You were going to drink it?” Chaudemanche nodded and replied, “Yes”.
Sentence was adjourned for an alcohol assessment requirement but the judge warned Chaudemanche:
“I make it very clear that if I deal with you next time, you will be going to prison”.
Chaudemanche, of Lewisham, who pleaded guilty to the theft at an earlier hearing, was remanded on bail ahead of sentence on January 26.
See full article here (standard.co.uk)