Leeds car theft house burglars handed lengthy jail sentences

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TWO convicted burglars who broke into a house in Leeds in the early hours before stealing the homeowner’s car have been jailed for more than ten years.

Leeds Crown Court heard third strike burglars Joe Cunningham, 23, and Michael Sayers, 36, snapped the patio door lock at the house on Barrowby Road at Colton before stealing keys and driving of in the one-year-old VW Golf.

The couple who owned the house were woken by the burglary and alerted police just after 3.30am on January 12.

The car was tracked by police as it was driven through Leeds before being abandoned at Granary Wharf. Cunninghan and Sayers were arrested nearby.

Reading from a victim impact statement, Prosecutor Mark Brookes said the burglary had a “massive effect” on the couple whose house was broken into.

Mr Brookes said they had to take time of work and had trouble sleeping, adding: “We enjoyed living in our property but now feel unsettled and have considered moving from the area.”

Sayers, of Farrow Road Armley and Cunningham, of Poole Crescent, Crossgates, both admitted burglary and theft.

Cuningham has three previous burglary convictions and Sayers has a string of previous convictions for offences including burglary and robbery.

James Bourne-Arton, for Cunningham said he is the father of a young daughter and needed money.

James Lake, for Sayers, said since 2003 Sayers he has only spent 20 weeks out of prison, adding: “He accepts he has become almost an institutionalised person where his home is in a custodial setting.”

Recorder Richard Woolfall jailed Sayers for five-years-and-four-months and Cunningham for four-years-and-nine-months.

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