Burnley burglar with 17 GCSEs is jailed

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A PERSISTENT burglar – an Asperger’s sufferer said to be highly intelligent – has been jailed for 936 days.

Ashley Love (35) of no fixed address pleaded guilty to burglary at a house in Melville Street, Burnley, on September 8th last year.

Recorder N.S. Clarke QC heard that Love had 23 convictions for 78 offences including 13 dwelling house burglaries. Love was said to be a heroin addict who was being prescribed methadone while serving an earlier prison sentence.

Sentencing him to 936 days in prison, Recorder Clarke said: “You have an appalling record particularly in relation to the burglary of properties.

“You went armed with a crowbar. However, I take the view this was a single incident and the particular difficulties you suffer.”

Miss Mercedeh Jabbari (prosecuting) told Burnley Crown Court that around 6 a.m. on September 8th the householder had got up to go to work when he saw the defendant running from his back yard.

She said: “He gave chase along with his cousin and the two men eventually grabbed the defendant until he broke free. Police arrested him a short time later nearby.

“The defendant was carrying a Playstation and CDs. A crowbar was found later. The defendant was later picked out in an identity parade.”

Mr Rick Holland (defending) told the court that his client was “an intelligent and articulate man”.

He added: “I have been told he has 17 GCSEs and that he also suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome.

“One wonders whether his catalogue of previous convictions is down to his drug taking or mental illness. It’s likely to be a multiplicity of causes. It is a very depressing situation and an unusual set of circumstances.”