A man accused of stealing thousands of pounds worth of camera equipment from stores across South East England has been sent to prison.

Michael Purtill, 58, of Kirkham Street, London SE18, was charged with a string of thefts from high-street stores dating back to 19 November 2012. The most recent took place on 29 July 2013.

Purtill was sentenced to 32 months for theft and attempted theft.

He is expected to serve half that time in prison, according to Woolwich Crown Court where he was sentenced last month.

The court declined to release further details.

AP published an appeal for help last year. Stores that reported missing kit were: Park Cameras, in Burgess Hill, West Sussex; Wex Photographic in Norwich; London Camera Exchange in Guildford, Surrey; Harpers Photographic in Woking; and Red Dot Cameras in London.

Purtill had also been accused of the attempted theft of a £449.95 lens from the Peter Jones department store in London’s Sloane Square.