Belfast Telegraph

Elderly drug raid victim wants to leave home

By Amanda Ferguson

A traumatised elderly woman wants to leave her home after she was terrorised by armed burglars, her son has said.

The 78-year-old was one of two pensioners targeted within minutes of each other in Belfast on Monday night.

A gang looking for drugs forced their way into her house in the Lower Braniel Road area of Castlereagh at around 7.45pm.

The frightened victim was threatened by a man brandishing a screwdriver.

Her son, who did not want to be identified, told the Belfast Telegraph his mother is terrified and now wants to leave her home of 30 years.

"She is so, so scared," he said.

"You couldn't print what I think about these people. They are downright rotten in this day and age. She wants to move house. She's 78 years of age and this is the first time she's been a victim of crime.

"How would they feel if it was their parents or grandparents?"

The man said five men entered the house searching for drugs.

"Five of them came in with a screwdriver and they were demanding drugs and wanted to know where her grandson was," he said.

"They must have been watching the house. I'm her son and stay with her and I think they wanted to know if I was in.

"Four went up the stairs and went through all our stuff while one watched over her.

"She felt threatened and was worried about her safety. She was able to make it outside and cry for help. She's terrible. She's shaking. She's hasn't been to sleep.

"I am adding extra locks and security lights to the house now."

Around 15 minutes earlier, three men entered the home of an 83-year-old woman in the Queensfort Park South area of Carryduff and stole cash.

Again, the elderly woman in the house was threatened with a screwdriver.

Meanwhile, detectives in Belfast are appealing for information following a burglary of a pensioner's home in the Graymount Park area of north Belfast, also on Monday evening. At around 9pm, a number of males entered the house of an 80-year-old man and took his keys and wallet, which contained money and cards.

It is believed they ran off in the direction of Gray's Lane.

Detective Constable Owen Nevin appealed for witnesses to contact CID at Castlereagh Police Station on the non-emergency number 101.

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