Accrington mosque raider left DNA behind

A DRUNKEN mosque raider who smashed his way in with a spade was caught after he left a bottle with his DNA on it, a court was told.

Jamie Taylor, 27, ransacked the Faizan-e-Madina Mosque in Richmond Road, Accrington, at night last August 25 and stole a computer tower and cash.

It was the third time the premises had been targeted last year, although Taylor was not responsible for the other two break-ins, Burnley Crown Court heard.

The hearing was told Taylor, who considered himself a binge drinker and not an alcoholic, had also taken ketamine and cocaine before the unprofessional attack on the premises.

The defendant, of Burnley Road, Padiham, had admitted burglary and had been committed for sentence by Blackburn magistrates. He received a 12-month community order, with 100 hours unpaid work.

Lisa Worsley, prosecuting, said police were called to the mosque.

Taylor had broken in by the fire exit at the back. He took the computer and cash, together worth £420 and turned the office ‘upside down’.

CCTV showed an offender at the point of entry with a bottle in his hand. He was seen to put it on the floor, next to the fire exit.

The bottle was tested and the DNA matched the defendant. He was questioned and made no comment.

Taylor had seven offences on his record and the burglary was his third alcohol-related crime.

David Ryan, for Taylor, who works nights at Boohoo in Burnley, said: “He doesn’t consider himself to be alcohol dependent, but it’s clearly been the root cause of his offending behaviour in the past and indeed in this occasion. He considers himself a binge drinker.”

Sentencing, Judge Andrew Woolman said the burglary was ‘unplanned and drunken’ and continued: “It was very unprofessional. I suspect it was spur of the moment and it’ not the usual sort of offence you commit.”

The judge ordered the defendant to pay £420 compensation to the mosque and added: “They may think it’s not enough because of the mess you made, but it’s something.”

Lancashire Telegraph