Harleston burglar jailed for 33 months

A drug addict who carried out 19 burglaries at houses and commerical premises in Suffolk and Norfolk involving more than �30,000 of stolen property has been jailed for 33 months.

Minnie Lee, 35, who has been a drug addict since the age of 13, pleaded guilty at Ipswich Crown Court to one offence of burglary, two offences of fraud by false representation and asked for 21 offences, including two dwelling house burglaries and 16 burglaries at commerical premises, to be considered. He was jailed for 33 months less 74 days he has spent in custody.

Godfried Duah, prosecuting, said Lee, of Bullfinch Drive, Harleston, had burgled Wilby Croft at Barley Green, Stradbroke, on May 11 while the owners were out. Lee had gained entry through an unlocked conservatory door and had stolen a laptop computer, a handbag containing �50 to �80 cash, bankcards and an air pistol.

Mr Duah said that shortly after the burglary Lee had used bankcards stolen during the raid to obtain �280 from a cash machine.

Joanne Eley, for Lee, said her client had gone to Wilby Croft looking for tools to steal to sell.

She said the burglary had been committed during daylight hours and before going into the house and garage Lee had knocked at the door and shouted out to check that no one was at home. 'He doesn't like to enter properties when occupants are present,' said Miss Eley.

Miss Eley said Lee had a travelling background and had been a drug addict since the age of 13. She said Lee had committed the burglary at Stradbroke because he had no money while waiting for his benefit claim to be sorted out. 'He'd got no money for food or drugs,' said Miss Eley.

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