Ukranian Roman Ostriakov was caught in 2011 pocketing €4.07 ($4.72) worth of food in a supermarket in Genoa, after a customer spotted him and reported him to a member of staff, Italian media reported on Tuesday.
He was sentenced to six months in prison and ordered to pay a €100 fine.
But the verdict was appealed on grounds that Ostriakov had been stopped before he had actually left the supermarket, and at a second appeal, Italy’s court of cassation acquitted him.
It was clear the defendant “could not live without feeding himself, so he acted out of necessity,” the court said.
Source: The Local