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Raiders 'threatened woman with hatchet'

By Ashleigh McDonald

Published 22/09/2016

A man has relived the moment he and his wife were confronted by two armed men — one brandishing a hatchet — who hooded them and tied them up before stealing jewellery and cash cards.

The couple’s home in the Upper Cavehill area of north Belfast was targeted on the evening of December 7, 2014.

They had just returned from a weekend break and were preparing a cup of tea when they were confronted by two intruders.

Both the man and his wife had sacks placed over their heads and had their hands bound.

After stealing a substantial amount of jewellery from the safe, the pair then asked the couple to reveal the PIN numbers for their bank cards.

Giving evidence at Belfast Crown Court, the male occupant said: “They told us they were leaving one person behind. They said, ‘We will be back. We are going to check the PIN numbers and if we don’t get the money, we will be back.’

“They told my wife, ‘We will hit you with the hatchet.’”

The man also told how, after he was confronted by the intruders, he was pushed into the living room, where he joined his wife on the floor.

“My wife was shouting, ‘Take anything, take anything’,” he said.

“She just wanted the whole experience to end.

“She was very ill at the time and still is.”

The man was giving evidence at the trial of Brian Andrews, from Oldpark Road in the north of Belfast.

The 49-year-old denies aggravated burglary, as well as two other counts of false imprisonment.

The trial continues.

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