Drug debt burglar's sentence suspended

PUBLISHED: 13:41 11 May 2007 | UPDATED: 22:47 28 May 2010

A BURGLAR who took part in a £2,500 raid at the Co-op store in Chatteris to pay off a drug debt was given a four-month suspended jail sentence this week. Gary Behagg was also ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work, and the bolt croppers and tools f

A BURGLAR who took part in a £2,500 raid at the Co-op store in Chatteris to pay off a drug debt was given a four-month suspended jail sentence this week.

Gary Behagg was also ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work, and the bolt croppers and tools found in his car were confiscated.

An alarm at the store was activated just before midnight on April 4, and a witness saw three men running around in the store and called police, prosecutor Andrew Williams told Fenland magistrates on Tuesday.

A police helicopter was scrambled, and Behagg was found in his vehicle, with a balaclava, bolt croppers and other tools. A dog handler found a black box containing £1 and £2 coins between Behagg's car and the store. Hooded sweatshirts and gloves worn by the burglars were found in his vehicle.

Behagg, of Newlands Road, Chatteris, had previously admitted burgling the supermarket on April 4, stealing £2,500.

He told police he had been forced into taking part in the burglary because he owned money for drugs. He refused to name his accomplices.

Solicitor Hugh Cauthery said Behagg had not touched the money, and had been "requested" to take part in the burglary.

"The items found in his car were nothing to do with him, except that his mask had been taken off," he said. "He had collapsed because of a viral infection. The burglary was dealt with promptly and competently by the police, and no money was lost.

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