Burglar caught using bait laptop

A BURGLAR has been ordered to carry out 80 hours of unpaid work and pay £372 in compensation after stealing a ‘bait’ laptop from a business in St Leonards.

Robin Clark, 37, of Carpenter Drive, St Leonards, pleaded guilty to three counts of burglary when he appeared at Hastings Magistrates Court on Monday (April 8).

The court was told how the premises in Moorhurst Road was broken into twice between Wednesday, September 19, and Thursday, September 20, last year, and coffee was taken from the kitchen area.

Concerned that the burglar may return and commit further damage and thefts, Hastings Police put a laptop within the premises which contained a special tracking system.

Magistrates heard the burglar returned days later and took the lap top. The activation system on the lap top alerted police officers it had been taken and it was located at an address in St Leonards. Further enquiries then led police to arrest Clark.

On Monday, he was given a 12-month community order, a six-month supervision order and told to pay £100 costs as well as being ordered to carry out unpaid work and hand over compensation.

Hastings District Commander Paul Phelps said: “I am so pleased with this result. The technology came into its own and secured a conviction. We will use all that is available to us to prevent and detect crime in our community.”