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Food delivery app used by burglar to raid Belfast woman's home, court hears

By Alan Erwin

Published 24/07/2015

A burglar used a food delivery app to target the victim's home, a court has heard
A burglar used a food delivery app to target the victim's home, a court has heard

A burglar used a food delivery app to target the victim's home, a court has heard.

Eamonn McMurray (26) is accused of raiding the woman's house in Belfast following online checks on her takeaway orders.

Prosecutors said a picture of a smashed-up computer stolen from the Ravenhill Avenue property was later discovered.

McMurray, of Farnham Street in the city, faces charges of burglary of a dwelling, criminal damage, and possession of cannabis.

As he appeared before Belfast Magistrates Court yesterday, details of the alleged offences committed on March 7 were disclosed.

A prosecution lawyer outlined how McMurray was thought to have been in contact with the woman over the internet.

Deputy District Judge Joe Rice was told a mobile app was used to check on food deliveries to her house.

"He was able to look up on the computer to see where she last ordered from and get her address from that," the prosecutor claimed.

McMurray allegedly broke in to steal an Apple MacBook Air and shoes.

A picture of the computer broken in two was obtained as part of the investigation, the court heard.

An estimated £1,230 of damage was caused to that model and a television set at the property.

Three sofas and mattresses were also damaged in the incident, according to the prosecution.

When McMurray was subsequently arrested he was allegedly in possession of a quantity of cannabis.

Adjourning the case, Mr Rice requested more details about how much the raid had cost the victim.

Releasing McMurray on continuing bail for two weeks, he said: "It's a terrible violation of this lady's privacy, and then compounded by burglary, theft and social media activity as well."

Factfile

Ordering food using mobile apps has taken off in recent years as a convenient alternative to the phone. Larger companies have their own apps, but many smaller takeaways have a presence on popular apps such as Just Eat or Nifty Nosh. Since users must give their name, address and phone number, taking security precautions, such as a password, is recommended.

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