A prolific pretty criminal has walked free from court despite picking up her 648th conviction after her lawyer appealed to the judge to give her "one last chance".
Jennifer Armstrong, who is thought to have one of the longest criminal records in Irish history, convinced a judge to grant her a final reprieve after admitting a shoplifting charge.
The 44-year-old has previously racked up hundreds of convictions, including 88 for theft and 216 for public intoxication, mainly committed around Dublin city centre, the Irish Independent reported.
The latest offence took place at a Tesco store in the Rathmines area of the city on 8 July, where she was caught by security staff attempting to leave the shop with an €8 (£7.20) bottle of wine under her jumper.
The defendant, who the court heard was a homeless alcoholic, had only been released from a 16-month prison sentence two days before the incident.
Armstrong was said to be “very intoxicated” when she was arrested by Garda officers who later arrived at the scene.
Addressing the court, Armstrong’s barrister said her client had fallen on hard times and had made multiple attempts to get her life back on track.
She said the defendant had no money and that she was still waiting to be paid for representing her, calling on Judge Carol Anne Coolican to show lenience.
“Could you give her one last chance?” the lawyer said, according to The Herald. “She knows it’s make or break time.”
The court had previously heard how Armstrong racked up a “record” number of convictions after living a “tragic” life, trapped in a “vicious circle” of poverty and substance abuse.
She had spent a combined 27 years of her life serving various stints behind bars.
Armstrong received a one-month suspended prison sentence. A probation officer told the court the defendant would be offered a residential addiction and rehabilitation programme.