Belfast Telegraph

Lisburn pensioner threatened with hedge-cutters during robbery ordeal

By David Young

Vicious thugs tied up a pensioner and threatened him with hedge-cutters as they burgled his house on Friday night.

The terrifying robbery happened in the Old Hillsborough Road area of Lisburn.

The man, who is in his 70s, had returned home at around 5.30pm.

As he opened the front door he was bundled inside by two men who kicked him and placed him on a chair before pushing him off it.

They then tied him to a chair leg with a cable tie and threatened to injure him with hedge cutters and a pair of serrated cutters.

One of the burglars then stayed with the victim while the other man searched the house.

They fled the property with a sum of cash, the victim's watch and his car, a grey Toyota RAV 4.

The elderly man eventually managed to free himself and raised the alarm at a neighbour's house at around 6.10pm.

He was not physically hurt but was left badly shaken, police said.

Later that evening, another elderly man was left badly shaken after two men broke into his home in Bessbrook, Co Armagh.

At around 7.50pm, it was reported that two men forced their way into the property and confronted the occupant.

They left a short time later empty-handed.

The victim, who is in his 80s, was left badly shaken.

Both robbers are described as approximately 5ft 8ins in height.

One was wearing a light-coloured hooded top, tracksuit bottoms and white trainers, while the other was wearing a black beanie-style hat, a short-sleeved shirt, blue jeans and white trainers.

They made off in a dark hatchback-type vehicle, similar in size to an Audi A3 or Volkswagen Golf.

Lagan Valley MLA Pat Catney (above) said he was sickened by the robberies. "These criminals are targeting some of the most vulnerable people in our society," he said.

"These elderly people have worked and come through things that nobody should have to come through - things like the Troubles, and for many, the last war.

"These attacks are absolutely despicable. If anyone knows anything or hears anything, they should tell the police immediately.

"Neighbours should be the eyes and ears of the community, and help protect our elderly.

"We all need to stand together: we all need to be vigilant on their behalf.

"They need to feel that they are safe in their own homes.

"There needs to be zero tolerance of these crimes."

Police have appealed for anyone who has any information about these robberies to get in touch with them on 101, or anonymously via Crimestoppers on the number 0800 555 111.

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