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Book-stealing librarian jailed for eight months

Haul: Stolen books recovered from McGregor’s home PICS: PA

A LIBRARIAN who stole rare books, including one described as a ‘cultural asset’ about the Aberfan disaster, has been jailed for eight months.

Elizabeth McGregor, 57, advertised them for sale on her Amazon account.

She put a £400 price tag on the Report Of The Tribunal Of Inquiry Into The Aberfan Disaster, which had been stolen from a secure area of the library in Pontypridd, south Wales, where she worked.

Theft: McGregor put a £400 price tag on the Aberfan book

The book, which details the 1966 tragedy that claimed the lives of 116 children and 28 adults, was found dumped in a recycling bin outside her house. Hundreds of other stolen books were recovered from her home, including some which she had tried to burn.

McGregor, of Hirwaun, told her three-day trial at Merthyr Tydfil crown court that she had bought the Aberfan book for ‘little more than £1’.

But she was convicted of theft and perverting the course of justice. Sentencing her, Judge Richard Twomlow said: ‘The items that you stole were of substantial value. They were of historical and cultural value in some cases.’

McGregor’s lawyer Katherine Lane said her client was a ‘lonely individual’ with physical and mental health problems.

Since leaving the library service, she has been working for Public Health Wales. McGregor is also in ‘significant debt’, the court heard.