Judges reject crook’s appeal for jail mercy

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A convicted burglar from Hemel Hempstead had his plea for a cut in his four year jail sentence dismissed by top judges.

Nelson Loveridge, 23, broke into two dozen properties and attempted two more burglaries in the town between November last year and January this year, before being sentenced in March.

Nelson Loveridge has been jailed for four years for a spate of burglaries in Boxmoor in January 2013.

Nelson Loveridge has been jailed for four years for a spate of burglaries in Boxmoor in January 2013.

In a hearing at London’s Criminal Appeal Court, Loveridge’s lawyers told the judges that he was struggling with his addiction to betting and that he had a young son to support.

But Lord Justice Laws dismissed the appeal, saying: “This sentence is well justified.

“The appropriate starting point was six years which, after a full discount for guilty pleas, yields a sentence for four years. That was the sentence passed.

“We are not forgetting the personal mitigation, but the sentence here was just and proper, given the number of offences taken into consideration.”

Loveridge, of Honeycross Road, Chaulden, was arrested after he was found with ‘the tools of his trade’ during a botched raid. He had stolen more than £37,000 of property during the crime spree.

MP for Hemel Hempstead Mike Penning said of Loveridge: “He’s playing a game. He’s already had it cut from six to four, but he’ll be out in two. It sends out all the wrong messages to those that destroy people’s lives.

“I will be writing to the attorney general to see if he can review the sentence, because I think it’s unduly lenient.

A police spokesman said: “Burglary has a devastating effect on its victims. The thought that a stranger has entered your home and invaded your privacy is very distressing.

“We will do everything we can to catch burglars and bring them before the courts.”

Hertfordshire Constabulary offers free burglary prevention advice at www.herts.police.uk.