A MAN has avoided jail after he stole a portable hard drive containing sensitive case files from a Kidderminster solicitors.

Gary Griffin, who resides at the Lion Hotel in Kidderminster, pleaded guilty to theft when he appeared at Kidderminster Magistrates' Court on Wednesday (June 5).

Griffin, aged 39, entered Roger and Co Solicitors in Comberton Place as a trespasser between December 3 and December 6, 2018 and stole the hard drive, which contained sensitive files, from inside.

He also took two mobile phones and some stamps.

Magistrates sentenced him to 16 weeks in prison, suspended for 18 months.

Although Griffin's crime typically has a minimum sentence of 18 weeks, magistrates decided to suspend his sentence because he now has a fixed place of residence.

They did, however, order him to pay £227 in compensation, plus a victim surcharge of £115 and £185 to the Crown Prosecution Service.

Griffin must also comply with a 20-week curfew with electronic monitoring, which requires him to remain indoors at the Lion Hotel, off Lion Street, between 7pm and 7am.