AN OPPORTUNISTIC thief who swiped an expensive bangle from under a Renfrewshire jeweller’s nose has been jailed.

Douglas McLean, 36, reached into a cabinet when the H. Samuel worker opened it to show a piece of jewellery to another customer on July 22 last year.

He managed to get his hands on a 9-carat gold torque bangle, worth £850, and fled the store.

It wasn’t until about 40 minutes later that the worker noticed the item had been stolen.

She examined CCTV footage, which showed McLean stealing the bangle from right under her nose, and contacted the police.

McLean, of Priesthill, Glasgow, had originally been placed on a drug treatment and testing order (DTTO), but breached this and was hauled back into the dock at Paisley Sheriff Court last week.

Sheriff Tom McCartney had been asked to let McLean continue on the DTTO to try to get clean but, instead, jailed him for eight months, reduced from 10 months as he admitted his guilt.

He told the accused: “I do not consider this matter can be dealt with by an alternative to a custodial sentence.

“The value of the item was £850 and there was no recovery, you have a bad record of previous convictions, of which many are for crimes of dishonesty, and for offending whilst on bail and this was also during a period when you had been released early from a sentence of imprisonment.

“I do consider a significant prison sentence is appropriate in respect of this matter.”