A frail elderly man has told how a gang of robbers threatened to kill him as they ransacked his Woodvale home in north Belfast at the weekend before making off with a sum of cash.
The 86-year-old, who does not want to be identified for fear of his personal safety, had a stroke last year, has suffered cancer, is blind in one eye and partially deaf — but was shown no mercy by the thieves who made off with around £1,000 on Saturday night.
“My son went out for a wee while and I was sitting here in the living room. It was about 10.20 and the doorbell went and I thought, ‘He’s forgotten his key or something’,” the pensioner told the Belfast Telegraph.
“When I opened the door there was a big shove and one of them knocked me back into the house and three more came in, there must have been four or five of them.
“One boy took me back inside and pushed me into a chair and said, ‘You sit there and if you don’t tell us where the money is, we’ll kill you’, he pushed me back into the chair when I tried to move.
“They shut the door on me and the other ones went upstairs.”
The victim described how the ordeal went on for about half an hour before the men returned downstairs.
“Then they went out the door and told me to sit there and not to move or else,” he added.
Local DUP councillor Dianne Dodds condemned the attack.
“This is a shocking escapade and these things are devastating for older people who have worked hard and are often far too trusting,” she said.
Police at Tennent Street have appealed for information about the burglary, which happened in Broom Street.