TWO "professional thieves" are to be released from custody after admitting their part in a series of high-value shoplifting offences.

In June, three members of a six-person group were sentenced for numerous theft from shop offences.

They were 43-year-old Florian Mihai and 55-year-old Vasile Sima, both of Lord Street in Walsall, as well as 27-year-old Ana-Maria Mihai, of Greenhill Road in Birmingham.

Each of the three received a three-week immediate custodial sentence.

A fourth person - 22-year-old Vivi Ionela Nastur, of no fixed abode - had already been sentenced in the Magistrates Court at an earlier stage to a total of eight weeks for her involvement.

The final members of the group - 22-year-old Alexandru Florin Mihai of Greenhill Road in Birmingham and 40-year-old Florina-Luminita Mihai of Lord Street in Walsall - appeared at Mold Crown Court on Tuesday for their part in the incidents.

Setting out the five incidents and the involvement of each of the defendants, Emmalyne Downing, prosecuting, explained the first occurred on April 4 this year at Plas Coch Sainsbury's.

Security staff at the store noticed the Nicorette display had been emptied and a number of security tags had been left on an adjacent shelf.

CCTV revealed Vasile Sima, Florian Mihai and Florina Mihai committing the theft, which equated to a value of £1,756.

The next offence happened that same day, when Florian Mihai went into Boots at Plas Coch with Florina Mihai and took £1,000 worth of skincare products.

On April 24, security at the same Boots store were made aware Florian Mihai, Florina Mihai and Vasile Sima had entered the premises and taken numerous items collectively worth £2,217.52.

They were seen to get into a blue VW Passat vehicle, which was reported to and stopped by the police.

The three were in the vehicle, as were various Boots products.

Importantly, also found was a list of post codes which when checked, led to other Boots stores.

Another of the shoplifting incidents happened on the same day at the same store, when Vivi Nastur, Ana-Maria Mihai and Alexandru Mihai had concealed goods and left without paying.

They also left the scene in a VW Passat - but this was a separate vehicle, and was also stopped.

When searched, cosmetics worth £2,204.30 were found in various bags.

It was also discovered that those three defendants had stolen skincare products worth £792.39 from Boots at Eagles Meadow that same day.

Dhaneshwar Sharma, defending Alexandru and Florina Mihai, told the court: "They have both been in custody for 75 days - equivalent to five months - which means they have served time in excess of their co-defendants through no fault of their own.

"They have found imprisonment particularly difficult given they're in a foreign country where they speak little of the English language.

"Both of them do not intend to repeat their behaviour."

Mr Sharma urged Judge Niclas Parry to pass a sentence equal to those received by the co-defendants last month.

"You are professional thieves," the Judge told both defendants.

"Acting in a team. This was organised crime.

"Thousands of pounds worth of goods were taken.

"But you pleaded guilty and I give you maximum credit. And I bear in mind that in this country, you have no previous convictions."

The Judge handed down a sentence of three weeks to run concurrent on each of the defendants' shoplifting offences and as such, will be released given the time has already been served.

They must pay £300 costs and a £154 victim surcharge.