Burglars steal thousands from Lyminge Food and Wine Store in Folkestone
Two heartless burglars have been jailed after stealing more
than £8,500 of cigarettes and lager from a village store while
the owner's family cried with fear in the flat above.
Antony Allen, 34, and Daniel Griffin, 27, raided the Lyminge
Food and Wine Store in Canterbury Road, Folkestone, in June last
They used a crowbar and an axe to smash their way into the shop
at 3am before swiping the store's entire cigarette stock and four
cans of lager.
The owner, who lives in the flat above the shop, was woken up by
the sound of broken glass and the men's footsteps. He shouted at
them to leave before dialing 999.
The court heard his four children had cried in fear while the
raid was being carried out.
An hour after the burglary, police stopped the men and were told
they had been on a fishing trip despite having no kit and different
packs of branded cigarettes.
Officers arrested and interviewed the men and charged them three
months later after a forensic study examining the glass fragments
on their clothes and shoes.
Allen, of Badlesmere Close, pleaded guilty to burglary before
magistrates in December but Griffin of Jack Dunbar Close failed to
Prosecutor Edmund Burge said: "The total value of the cigarettes
were £8,540 effectively clearing the entire store.
"There was £186 worth of damage to the door and a full pack of
lager costing £5. All in all there was nearly £9,000 of damage to
the store owner.
"They (the burglary victims) were woken up by the sound of breaking glass and footsteps. They were described as crying loudly with fear" – Judge Heather Norton
"They were stopped in
Ashford an hour later by an officer who had heard about the
burglary. They said they had been fishing although they had no
"They were arrested after the officer saw they had two packs of
cigarettes with different brands.
Julian Blake, defending Allen, said his client suffered from a
heroin and crack cocaine addiction but was determined to get his
life back on track with the impending birth of his son in
He said: "He is at the stage of his life where he can go two
"He has entered a voluntary programme to help him from using
drugs and is making good progress."
Nicolas Maggs, defending Griffin, said his client had apologised
for a poor excuse for missing his court appearance explaining he
was juggling several job interviews at the time.
Both defence lawyers argued the burglary was a commercial one
but Judge Heather Norton said the family in the flat above made it
an aggravating factor.
She sentenced the two men to 21 months in prison but gave
Griffin an extra month for missing his court appearance.
She said: "They were woken up by the sound of breaking glass and
footsteps. They were described as crying loudly with fear. That is
the risk you took when you committed the burglary."
- Click here for more Ashford news...
- Click here for more news from across the county...