Sunderland raider tried to smash his way through club roof

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A WOULD-BE raider caused £2,000 of damage trying to break into a social club via the roof.

Lee Graham, of Pallion, Sunderland, attempted to smash his way into the High Lane club in Hebburn.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the 36-year-old’s plan was foiled when a committee member who lived nearby spotted what he was doing.

Prosecutor Kevin Wardlaw told the court: “The committee member became aware of some noises coming from the direction of the roof of the club.

“She looked out and saw a man on the roof of the club.

“He appeared to be crawling around, making attempts to get in and she could hear the sound of ripping.”

Graham was arrested and investigators found he had caused £2,000 damage.

Mr Wardlaw told the court: “The hole in the roof being made was almost directly above one of the gaming machines situated inside the premises.”

Graham, of Mafeking Street, who has convictions for 177 offences, including 59 for burglary, initially claimed he was on the roof hiding from his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend.

But he went on to plead guilty to attempted burglary.

He also admitted shoplifting meat from Morrisons stores in Seaburn, Whitley Bay and Byker.

Judge Esmond Faulks sentenced him to 51 weeks imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, with supervision and a six-month drug rehabilitation order.

Bob Spragg, defending, said: “He has an appalling record for crimes committed to fund one addiction or another.”

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