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Man found hiding in basement of Chatham property jailed


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A burglar discovered in the basement of a property he was targeting has been jailed for two and a half years.

Lee Fideghelli was one of two men who were found by officers responding to calls that a burglary was in progress in Rochester Street, Chatham.

The pair were arrested at the scene. Credit: Kent Police

After they were discovered, the pair claimed they were homeless and were looking for a place to sleep – but later pled guilty to burglary.

Fideghelli, of The Mount in Chatham, admitted burglary and attempted burglary, and was sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court on May 14.

Co-offender Mark Abraham, 30, also of The Mount, admitted the same offences and was sentenced to 60 days in prison, suspended for one year, at Medway Magistrates' Court on December 5.

Both offenders tried to enter a home at around 10.45pm on December 3 but, following their unsuccessful attempt, they walked away.

They returned to the same address a short time later and left when the occupant confronted them.

Lee Fideghelli, 43, was jailed for two and a half years. Picture: Kent Police
Lee Fideghelli, 43, was jailed for two and a half years. Picture: Kent Police

At 11.10pm, a second person reported hearing a loud noise coming from a different address in Rochester Street and called the police.

Officers were dispatched to the scene and came across two men in the basement of a multi-occupancy property, with clear damage caused to an entry door.

They detained Fideghelli and Abraham, who initially claimed they were homeless and were looking for a place to sleep.

Both men were charged while in custody, with Abraham pleading guilty at a remand hearing.

Fideghelli initially declined to enter a plea and has remained in custody since his arrest.

Mark Abraham, 30, was sentenced to 60 days in prison suspended for one year. Picture: Kent Police
Mark Abraham, 30, was sentenced to 60 days in prison suspended for one year. Picture: Kent Police

Investigating officer for the case Charlotte Lundy said: "Fideghelli's willingness to target two properties, in such a short period of time, clearly shows a remorseless determination to steal from innocent members of the public.

"I am pleased that our attending officers were quickly able to locate him, and Abraham, and put a stop to their offending before any property was stolen.

"It is only appropriate that a custodial sentence has been imposed, it is a result which doubtlessly makes Medway safer."

Read more: All the latest news from Medway

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