Man didn't realise bottle of wine he stole from Harrods was worth £20k

Romanee Conti

Romanee Conti Image by Charley / CC BY 2.0

A man who was described as “more of a connoisseur than a criminal mastermind” is still looking at jail-time for walking out of Harrods in London with an unpaid bottle of fine wine worth £20,000.

Boris Chaudemanche, 34, lifted the rare Cru from the Knightsbridge store early last month.

The fine-wine lover was checked by security as he tried to exit from the shop, but was adamant that he had no idea the bottle of Romanée-Conti was worth £19,995.

According to the London Evening Standard, the 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 said 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.”

It emerged that Chaudemanche had previous convictions for driving offences, but none for theft.

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