Belfast Telegraph

Man facing trial over burglary of OAP while she slept refused bail

A 27-year-old north Belfast man accused of breaking into the home of an 83-year-old and stealing cash and her pension book while she slept has been refused bail
A 27-year-old north Belfast man accused of breaking into the home of an 83-year-old and stealing cash and her pension book while she slept has been refused bail

By Ashleigh McDonald

A 27-year-old north Belfast man accused of breaking into the home of an 83-year-old and stealing cash and her pension book while she slept has been refused bail.

Adam Dunlop, from Antrim Road, denies a charge of burglary and is due to stand trial with a second man at Belfast Crown Court next month.

An application for bail was refused by Judge Stephen Fowler QC due to concerns he may reoffend if released from custody.

Judge Fowler was told that Dunlop and a co-accused were facing charges of burglary and attempted theft in east Belfast last November.

A prosecuting barrister said the Cregagh Road home of an 83-year-old was broken into between 2am and 6am - which is when the occupant woke up - on November 27, 2018.

A total of £2,500 in cash was taken along with her pension book, a Post Office card and a bank card.

The prosecutor said that at 5.05am on the morning in question Dunlop and the co-accused were seen at an ATM at Tesco on the Cregagh Road trying to withdraw £500 using the pensioner's bank card.

Dunlop was arrested a few days later.

He denied breaking into the woman's home but told police "some fella asked me to go with him to the ATM, and I was going to get £30 for my trouble".

The Crown barrister said when Dunlop returned to the hostel he was staying at last November 27, it was noticed he had a "substantial" amount of money and appeared to be in a drug-induced state.

It also emerged he is currently under threat.

Objecting to Dunlop's release, the barrister expressed concerns over reoffending.

He also noted the trial is due to start on September 17, and said: "This is a circumstantial case and one for a jury to resolve."

Defence barrister Patrick Taylor said while there may be a prima facie case against his client, there was no evidence to suggest Dunlop had been at the scene of the break-in.

The judge expressed concerns about fears of reoffending, noting that the trial will be taking place next month.

Refusing to release Dunlop on bail, Judge Fowler said: "He will remain in custody until his trial."

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