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morbid theft Man jailed after stealing food from dead homeless man in Belfast city centre

Mario Felloni was caught on CCTV rifling through the dead man's pockets

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A man has been jailed for nine months after he stole sandwiches and crisps from a homeless man found dead in Belfast city centre.

38-year-old Mario Felloni, of no fixed abode, rummaged through his victim’s pockets before taking the items in the early hours of April 28.

The homeless man may have been dead for some time before Felloni stole the items, Belfast Magistrate’s Court heard.

The defendant pleaded guilty to the theft in the Winecellar Entry of Belfast.

He was arrested after police examined CCTV footage from the scene of the victim’s death which showed Felloni searching a bag beside the deceased and rifling through his pockets before taking the items.

He was also seen checking the victim before the theft occurred.

A prosecutor described Felloni as being “meticulous in his search, spending around three minutes searching the victim’s pockets.

Speaking of the defendant’s actions, she added: "At no point does he try to assist the deceased, or bring the situation to anyone's attention.”

Felloni’s defence solicitor said: “It's awful what has occurred, but Mr Felloni didn't appreciate that the deceased had passed away.

"They were individuals who had shared sleeping bags, coats and food. He obviously was very shocked to subsequently find out this gentleman had passed away."

District Judge Mark McGarrity, in describing what had occurred, said: "If someone belonging to me died and they had something on their person, a picture, a note or something of sentimental value, and it's been taken, that would be significant."

The judge sentenced Felloni to nine months imprisonment, saying it was a case where a “deterrent sentence is appropriate”.

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