Burglar deserves ‘every second’ he is behind bars

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A prolific house-breaker, jailed after taking a rifle during a raid on a rural farmhouse, has been told by top judges he deserves ‘every second’ he spends behind bars.

Anthony Robert Rogers was locked up for five years at Brighton Crown Court in December last year after being found guilty of burglary. The 52-year-old, of Langney Rise, challenged his conviction and his sentence at London’s Criminal Appeal Court. But both of his appeals were dismissed by three of the country’s most senior judges, who said his conviction was ‘safe’ and his jail term was ‘not excessive’, given his repeated offending.

Rogers ransacked the property in Framfield in broad daylight on March 28 last year, and took a number of items including a rifle. Rogers denied the offence, but was found guilty by a jury. The court heard the burglary was committed while he was still on licence from prison for a previous break-in, and he had an ‘appalling record’ for burglaries and other offences of dishonesty.

His lawyers nevertheless argued his conviction was ‘unsafe’ because jurors had felt ‘rushed’ to reach a verdict on the last day the court was sitting before the Christmas break. They also argued his sentence was over the top for his crime, saying the crown court judge was wrong to find Rogers had deliberately ‘targeted’ the property.

But, dismissing both appeals, Lord Justice McCombe said there was a ‘strong case’ against Rogers; that nothing which happened during the trial affected the safety of his conviction, and that his sentence was not a moment too long. He added, “This man was an experienced burglar in this area and the judge’s conclusion, that this was a targeted burglary, was inevitable. We agree entirely with the judge’s sentencing remarks - this sentence was fully deserved and not a second excessive in length.”