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Burglar swigged Champagne in Hove raid
A burglar swigged champagne after ransacking a pensioner’s home.
Paul Clough was caught with the fizz when police arrived at the terrified woman’s house in Hove in August.
He and accomplice James “Jinksy” Dean, both of New Steine Mews, Hove, were sentenced to four years each for the crime yesterday (October 10).
The 85-year-old woman was in bed at about 10pm on August 25 when she heard noises in her semi-detached house.
She called police and when she answered the door to them they found Dean, 51, standing behind her.
He claimed he was doing gardening work for her – but the officers found jewellery in his pockets.
They went upstairs and found Clough drinking champagne swiped from the house in a room which was described as “turned upside-down”.
Clough, 38, claimed it was his aunt’s house and said he could not remember her name because of short-term memory loss.
He too had taken jewellery and both men admitted burglary.
The woman gave a statement saying she thought she was going to be held hostage.
Since the attack she has found it hard to leave the house or even get out of bed.
Clough had 38 convictions for 91 offences, while Dean had 38 convictions for 119 offences.
Tony Loader, defending both men, said: “They are very tragic people whose lives have been ruined by both drugs and alcohol.”
Passing sentence, Judge Richard Hayward told the men: “You are both career criminals.”
Dean was on bail at the time of the burglary after being charged with dealing heroin to an |undercover police officer in Brighton.
When the officer asked him for drugs in an operation last year, he spat a parcel out of his mouth and sold him two “wraps” of heroin for £20.
The court was told it was his third drug-dealing crime.
He was jailed for 12 weeks in November last year for dealing a class A drug, and had a further conviction from 1987.
He was sentenced to nine months in prison, to run consecutively to the burglary term.
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