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Couple who burgled dental lab were high on drugs

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: October 11, 2012

JAILED: Ashley Griffiths

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THE couple who burgled a dental lab were so high on drink and drugs that they really put their feet in it, a court heard.

Maxine Sellars and Ashley Griffiths left footprints at the premises that were easily identified by police.

Both admitted their parts in the ransacking of the dental company's offices and the theft of laptop computers and cash.

Sellars, 37, of Millbrook Court, Millbrook Street, Cheltenham, also admitted breaking into an elderly woman's home in the early hours of the same morning and stealing handbags and cash while the owner lay terrified on a sofa.

She was jailed for 22 months after she admitted a further charge of fraud, and breaching both a community order and conditional discharge.

Griffiths, 26, of Honeybourne Way, Cheltenham, was jailed for 12 months because he had a previous conviction for burglary. Sellars broke down in tears as she was sentenced by Judge William Hart at Gloucester Crown Court.

Lisa Hennessy, prosecuting, said that in the early hours of November 24, the elderly lady was asleep in her flat when she was woken by the sounds of people moving around.

"One of the intruders was Sellars and a handbag containing £125 in cash, together with two other handbags, was taken. One and a half hours later at 4.30am, Robert Hallam arrived at his Hallam Dental company in Cheltenham to find that it had been ransacked.

"Two laptop computers, cheque books, an iPod and a car key were missing and he also found an empty cashbox on the roof of a car outside."

Mrs Hennessy said Sellars then tried to cash a cheque for £500 on the Hallam Dental account but the manager of the store was suspicious and contacted the company. Before the police arrived, Sellars left the premises but she left identity documents behind and police then arrested her at home.

Griffiths originally denied involvement in either burglary. However, police found footmarks at the dental company matching his shoes and Sellars'.

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